COMAH offences

Options available to COMAH offences we regulate

Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations 2015

Section 33(1)(c) Health and Safety at Work Act 1974

Contravention by an operator of any relevant requirement of the Control of Major Accident Hazards Regulations 2015 (COMAH 2015)

Standard criminal and offence specific responses:

  • Warning
  • Formal caution
  • Prosecution

Other considerations and notices specific to this offence:

(a) COMAH 2015 are treated as health and safety regulations under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
(b) COMAH 2015 are enforced by the Competent Authority. In Wales this is Natural Resources Wales acting jointly with the Health & Safety Executive and Office for Nuclear Regulation.
(c) Working arrangements concerning COMAH sites are set out in the Competent Authority Memorandum of Understanding. HSE/ONR will normally lead in dealing with issues concerning health and safety of people, and Natural Resources Wales will normally lead on issues concerning environmental protection.
(d) Many COMAH establishments are also subject to regulation under the Environmental Permitting Regulations 2016. For such sites, there will generally be the choice whether to take action under COMAH or under EPR and HSWA (for HSE). A case by case examination is required.