It has been announced that a new specialist hazardous area event called ‘HAZEX’ has been added to MAINTEC 2012 which takes place from Tuesday 28th February to Thursday 1st March 2012 at the NEC, Birmingham.

The new area is being introduced at the show for the first time to reflect the growing responsibilities of engineering professionals and the growing concerns and tighter legislation over the health and safety of industrial, commercial and government sites and facilities.

Commenting on the new element of the show, Matt Benyon, managing director at easyFairs UK & Ireland, said, “HAZEX will offer visitors the opportunity to discover the latest products, legislation, case studies and latest techniques applicable to engineers working within hazardous areas and handling hazardous materials.”

He continued, “One of the new minefields for engineering and operations professionals is the mandatory European Community directive ATEX 94/9/EC. ATEX stands for atmosphere explosive and it is the law in the EU. HAZEX will offer ATEX approved companies the ideal platform in which to showcase their products and services. Additionally, it provides a forum for companies supplying products to those working in hazardous environments.”

Indeed, it’s not just ATEX that has prompted easyFairs to host the new hazardous area. Health and safety has always been a key theme within MAINTEC, and an important issue that is covered by the exhibition.

Earlier in the year a recent report by the Health & Safety Executive found that around 8,000 people die each year from occupational cancers and around 14,000 new cases are reported each year. Many of these tragedies are caused by hazardous substances at work and, therefore, are entirely preventable.

Benyon continued, “The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) Regulations 2002 provide legislation that must be complied with by all companies throughout the EU. However, to really deal with the problem often means taking action over and above legal requirements. As organisers of MAINTEC that is where we can help, by bringing together the leading hazard prevention experts under one roof, so that visitors can witness first hand the very latest in hazard prevention training services and products.”

As well as a strong line-up of exhibitors, accompanying the exhibition will be a comprehensive seminar programme covering a variety of topics relating to working with and within hazardous areas.