Safety Hub

The Machinery Directive's Safety Requirements

The aim of the Machinery Directive is to improve machines, remove technical obstacles to trade and create similar regulations within the EEA (European Economic Area). Machines manufactured between 1995 and 2009 had to meet the old version of the directive (98/37/EC) which came into force on 1st January 1995. Machinery still older must meet the minimum requirements of the so called "Work Equipment Directive" 2009/104/EC. These are less demanding than the requirements of the Machinery Directive, particularly when it comes to documentation.


Basic requirements for CE marking

In order for a machine to be CE marked, it is necessary for the machine to meet the essential requirements for health and safety. Documentation must be provided, including design documents, a risk assessment, internal testing reports etc. Most machines additionally come under directives that must be complied with, e. g. the EMC Directive. CE marking only applies to safety and may not be used for advertisement. It does not distinguish a product as having a special quality, but instead is mandatory for ALL machinery.


Want more information about the CE marking? Contact us!


What, then, is a machine according to the Machinery Directive?


    • an assembly, fitted with or intended to be fitted with a drive system other than directly applied human or animal effort, consisting of linked parts or components,

    • assemblies of machinery ... or partly completed machinery which, in order to achieve the same end, are arranged and controlled so that they function as an integral whole


This means that the Machinery Directive applies to everything from a small hand-held machine to complex integrated manufacturing systems. Some machines are outside the scope of the Machinery Directive, e.g. some types of lifts and medical equipment.

(Specified in Article 1 clause 2).

Some of the key requirements of the Machinery Directive:
  • Integrate safety into the machinery from scratch; careful risk assessment is the way to do it

  • Guards and protection systems take priority over safety signs and warnings; manufacturers must anticipate human error

  • Hazardous automatic systems must never run without protective measures; lock hazards in, monitor them or give people a means of controlling the hazard

Learn more

Axelent is one of the market’s leading machine guard manufacturers. The complete systems we supply comply with current directives and standards.

Axelent Safety Design

Take a look at our new drawing application Axelent Safety Design - the simple way of designing safety

Discover simplicity with our intuitive drawing application, perfect for effortlessly crafting safety layouts. Safety Design offers a comprehensive range of products, from machine guards to pedestrian barriers, covering all aspects of safety in machinery and warehouse environments. Embrace a safer workspace with Safety Design, where safety meets simplicity.