The European Economic Community (EEC) adopted measures with the aim of progressively establishing an internal market by 31.12.92 comprising an area in which the free movement of goods, persons, services and capital is garanteed. The free circulation of products is to be achieved through the elimination of technical barriers to trade, taken into account a high level of protection of the workers on the basis of the “New approach to technical harmonization and standards”. Directives (Laws) in this field contain only essential safety requirements and technical details are left to European standardization organizations. In the field of Personal Protective Equipment two Council Directives were adopted in December 1989. The first one is related to the use by workers and the second one to their design. In the latter, three certification procedures are defined that correspond to the levels of danger against which the PPE's are intended to protect. For most PPE's, a type-examination certificate awarded by an approved inspection body is required. Currently there are 190 standards being worked out to accompany this regulation work.
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