Indicator major accidents

Industrial plants with no potential for extensive damage

Wherever chemical or biological hazard potential exists, exceptional events may result in the release of substances, causing a major accident. Major accidents can cause death, injury, extensive damage and environmental pollution outside plants. Plants with hazard potential are subject to the Major Accidents Ordinance (MAO)which requires a reduction of these risks. If the consequences of potential major accidents are classified as “serious”, the authorities will require the plant owner to carry out a risk assessment, through which the risk can be specified in detail and evaluated. If the risk is unacceptable, the enforcement authority shall require additional safety measures to reduce it. The locations of plants that have carried out risk assessments indicate the areas in which major accidents causing severe damage could arise.

Assessment of the state
medium medium
Assessment of the trend
positive positive
Covered by MAO without risk assessment** 2017: 1069 Covered by MAO with risk assessment* 2017: 158 Covered by MAO without risk assessment** 2013: 2162 Covered by MAO with risk assessment* 2013: 241 Covered by MAO without risk assessment** 2009: 2330 Covered by MAO with risk assessment* 2009: 259 Covered by MAO without risk assessment** 2005: 2122 Covered by MAO with risk assessment* 2005: 205 Covered by MAO without risk assessment** 2001: 2364 Covered by MAO with risk assessment* 2001: 244 Covered by MAO without risk assessment** 1996: 2314 Covered by MAO with risk assessment* 1996: 163
* 1996–2001: excluding establishments with biological risks; from 2005: improved data basis. ** 1996–2001: excluding establishments with biological risks and extrapolated values, because the data was collected in the form of units and not in the form of establishments; from 2005: improved data basis, from 2015: data according to revised scope

Data for the graph: Excel
Source: Enforcement authorities responsible at canton and federal level
Proportion of the industrial plants withthout a potential for extensive damage (persons and environment)* 2017: 87 Proportion of the industrial plants withthout a potential for extensive damage (persons and environment)* 2013: 90 Proportion of the industrial plants withthout a potential for extensive damage (persons and environment)* 2009: 90 Proportion of the industrial plants withthout a potential for extensive damage (persons and environment)* 2005: 91 Proportion of the industrial plants withthout a potential for extensive damage (persons and environment)* 2001: 91 Proportion of the industrial plants withthout a potential for extensive damage (persons and environment)* 1996: 93
* 1996–2001: excluding establishments with biological risks; from 2005: improved data basis. ** 1996–2001: excluding establishments with biological risks and extrapolated values, because the data was collected in the form of units and not in the form of establishments; from 2005: improved data basis, from 2015: data according to revised scope

Data for the graph: Excel
Source: Vollzugsstellen Bund und Kantone
Comment

In 2017, 158 of the 1,227 establishments subject to the MAO were required to submit or update risk assessments. This number almost halved after revision of the MAO, which is why the trend is considered as positive. The total number of establishments subject to the MAO also decreased significantly.  Accordingly, the goal of the revision has been achieved, which was for enforcement authorities to be able to focus their inspections more on the relevant establishments.

Establishments subject to a risk assessment are mainly plants manufacturing chemicals, large sports facilities with a high public footfall (swimming pools, ice rinks,etc) and storage facilities for chemicals handling and transportation.

International comparison

The indicator is not comparable at international level as the criteria for the reporting of risk identification differs from country to country.

Method

The data (cf. Technical Instructions on basic geodata (Swiss environmental law), Register of Risks required under the Major Accidents Ordinance (StFV), identifiers 112.1 & 113.1) are extracted from the databases of the enforcement authorities. The data recorded as part of the updating of the Eidgenössischer Risikokataster (Swiss Register of Risks) indicate whether the plant could cause extensive damage to the public and/or the environment in the event of a major accident.

 
Last updated on: 12.04.2019

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