Production, transportation, storage and use of substances can lead to risks at the workplace. The government tries to minimise these risks by regulation.

European legislation (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals, REACH) requires companies to investigate the risks of the substances and take possible measures. Companies that buy chemicals, need to know the risks and what they can do to prevent them. More information about REACH can be found in the topic on our website.

Accidents involving dangerous substances

For companies working with hazardous substances, specific regulations exist regarding the prevention of major accidents involving dangerous substances. Depending on the amount of hazardous materials within a company, the "Hazards of Major Accident Decree 1999" (Brzo 1999, this is the Dutch implementation of Seveso II) or the "Additional Risk Assessment and Evaluation (ARIE) applies.
On June 1, 2015, the revised European Seveso Directive, Seveso III, will take effect. That means that Brzo - the Dutch translation of the directive - will have to be modified on that date. This is currently taking place. A new aspect is that BRZO firms have to use indicators to monitor their safety. RIVM supports the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment on this topic.

Major hazard control model

For accidents involving dangerous substances in BRZO companies, a special model was developed in accordance with the Storybuilder method, the MHC model. This model is designed for the Major Hazard Control (MHC) Directorate of the Labour Inspectorate. The database that holds the analysed accidents can be consulted as a separate database that is available through the Storybuilder download application. It involves about 260 accidents that occurred in the period 2004-2013. The MHC database and Storybuilder can be used to perform your own analyses to identify causes and improvement aspects, if desired after the addition of your own incidents or accidents.


The database is a separate database available via the Storybuilder downloadapplication.