Whenever any substance is contained under pressure there is a potential danger from sudden release of the stored energy. To combat this, regulations on safe design and use of pressure systems have long been in place within the
In essence, the requirements are that all systems must be properly designed, constructed, installed and operated within pre-determined safe operating limits. Usually these should be marked on the system. A system for regular maintenance must be in place to ensure that all systems remain in good condition. In addition to the maintenance system a system for periodic thorough examination of the equipment by a specialist “competent person” must be in place.
Many of the building heating systems within the University fall within scope of these regulations and are dealt with by Estates and Buildings. However, other management units also operate pressure systems or one sort or another and must make sure that these are appropriately designed and subject to suitable operation, maintenance, and examination regimes. All units who operate pressure systems should ensure that they have an inventory of these systems and that these are operated in accordance with the regulations.
For some types of system (mainly air compressors and steam systems) the University has arranged for thorough examination by a specialist company (currently at no cost to individual units). Access to the central register and to reports is available via SEPS. Where more specialised systems are in use the management units in control of these will need to make appropriate local arrangements for maintenance and examination of these. This will normally require the services of a specialist contractor. Such systems will typically include liquified or compressed gas systems.