Chemical precursors are a necessary or indispensable substance to produce others through a chemical process. As with drug precursors, there are also chemical substances that, due to their composition, can deviate from their legal use and be used in the creation of explosives. These are called explosive precursors.
We talk about any substance, mixture or product that could be used in the cultivation, production or synthesis of different explosive products, which are those that for any external cause—such as rubbing, heat or a small blow—are immediately transformed into gases, releasing large amounts of heat, pressure and/or radiation in a matter of seconds.
Explosive precursors are subject to strict regulations in the European Union, on the one hand, seeking to make the handling of explosive materials themselves safer, and on the other, as part of the plan to combat terrorism.
On April 18, 2008, the so-called European Union action plan for the improvement of explosives safety was adopted. The creation of a committee responsible for the study of explosive precursors was also suggested on that date.
This committee identified several substances that, without being explosives themselves, could be used in their clandestine synthesis and used for terrorist purposes. Once identified, the way of action at European level was recommended, as set out in Regulation (CE) n.º 98/2013.
Tandem HSE can help you meet these requirements without worrying, as well as identify the explosive precursors present in your installations.
This regulation establishes harmonized rules on trade, possession and use of explosive precursors or mixtures of materials that contain them. The ultimate goal is to limit the possibility of access to individuals and make mandatory the communication of any suspicion of theft or diversion of materials that could be used in the manufacture of explosives.
Thus, substances that previously could be acquired freely are now distributed by other means and require a series of permits for their purchase, as well as the data of who acquires the substance.
That is, the use of explosive precursors and mixtures containing them is still allowed if there is a real need, but the quantities used, the intended use and who is the buyer or distributor will be noted. In addition, these amounts must be justified and recorded.
This regulation has led to the creation of Law 8/2017 in Spain, about explosive precursors. There are, both at national and European level, obligations for producers, traders and individuals on the issue of explosive precursors that affect labeling, registration and mandatory documentation in each case.
The latest legislative update on explosive precursors is the one contained in the Resolution of May 16, 2018, of the Secretary of State for Security, which establishes the models of the application and the license that authorizes individuals to the possession and/or use of the restricted explosive precursors that appear in Law 8/2017.
If you have any questions about how you should proceed to request the use or permission to have certain substances, either as a private individual, or as an economic operator who needs to use one or more explosive precursors for your activity, please contact us at Tandem HSE. We can advise you on what is allowed and what is not allowed, and help you with regulatory processes. In addition, Tandem HSE can help you meet these requirements without you having to worry.