Directive 2014/35 / EU of the European Parliament and of the Council – dated 26 February 2014 and implemented in Italy by Legislative Decree 86 of 19 May 2016 – harmonises the Member States in relation to electrical equipment intended for use within specific voltage limits. The Directive aims to ensure that the electrical equipment involved have the appropriate protection against electrical hazards of various kinds. Referring to technical standards IEC / EN ISO – under which producers of electrical products must follow - the Directive explicitly foreseen the risks to health and safety, defining the parameters for which the devices are secure with respect to its intended use.
This Directive is part of the legislative framework for the free movement and marketing of products in the European community. Its ultimate aim is to avoid the risks related to a product or to a phenomenon, thus defending the common interest of European citizens and companies.
The English name for this directive: Low Voltage Directive;
Its abbreviation is: LVD;
Its code is: 2014/35/I;
Previous directives on this subject, Today they are no longer in force: 2006/95/EC, 73/23/EEC.
E 'useful to know the references of the directives because they often are in the products or components documentation, but also in the European laws and regulations if they have not recently been updated.
Field of application: Directive 2014/35 / EU (LVD) It regards the electrical material in alternating current and in direct current with a nominal voltage respectively between 50 and 1000 And between V 75 and 1500 V.
Essential requirements: affected products from the scope of the Directive, to be put on the European market, They must comply with the essential requirements described in Annex 1 of the directive. In general the essential requirements of the Directive concerning a high level of health protection and safety of persons, of domestic animals and goods, while ensuring the functioning of the internal market.
Main contents of the Directive
- Field of application
- Essential requirements
- Obligations of the manufacturer
- Obligations of the other economic operators
- Free movement
- Presumption of conformity and harmonized standards
- Conformity assessment
- notified bodies
- CE Marking
They are intended as "Background" the reasons that led to the writing of that directive.
Field of application
The scope defines the categories of products or phenomena covered by Directive. Often a general criterion is expressed accompanied by explicit lists of products / phenomena that are subject to the Directive and product / phenomena that are excluded from the Directive in order to clarify the specific situations.
In the section "Definitions" means including all those specific explanations of key terms in the Directive, useful to fully understand the scope.
The essential requirements are the requirements which the product must meet in order to be placed on the market. Often the essential requirements are placed in Annex I to Directive.
Obligations of the manufacturer
The manufacturer (or his authorized representative in the European Community) is the main person responsible for placing a product on the market. This chapter describes the requirements and procedures that they must follow, referring to the Annexes to Directive for explanations and more detailed regulations.
Obligations of the other economic operators
Distributors and retailers are also responsible and liable if they trade items that do not comply with European directives. They must verify that the manufacturer did run the electrical safety testing, that the product is equipped with the EU declaration of conformity and that it bears the CE mark.
Any importer must ensure that the procedures for the verification of conformity of the product have been performed, must verify the presence of the CE marking and make sure that the technical documentation of the product is available to the competent national authorities.
Member States must presume that products bearing the CE marking comply with all the provisions of the applicable directives providing for the affixing. They can not therefore be prohibited, restrict or prevent the placing on the market and putting into service in their territory of products bearing the CE marking, unless the provisions relating to CE marking have not been applied improperly.
Presumption of conformity and harmonized standards
At the directives of our interest it is associated with a list of harmonized standards that is published in the European Official Journal. The harmonized standards greatly facilitate the verification of compliance of a product with the requirements of Directive. In these standards it is described in detail how the tests or other assessment kinds necessary for the electrical safety checks must be carried out.
If a product is available the harmonized standards to cover all the requirements of the Directive - if these standards are applied comprehensively and the product passes all tests provided by the same rules – then it can be assumed that the product complies with the requirements of that Directive. In the absence of harmonized standards adequate to the product path it is more complicated and expensive.
Equipping a suitable laboratory to perform the tests required by the Harmonized Standards thing is rather onerous. For this reason, manufacturers are often rely on external test laboratories for the electrical safety testing.
In Europe it is the body that can make an assessment of compliance by acting as a third party or whether the one made by the manufacturer and its trusted laboratories is correct. In most cases, however, the use of a notified body is not provided or not required.
The products comply with all the provisions of the applicable directives providing for the CE marking must convey it. Such marking is, especially, an indication that the products comply with the essential requirements of all applicable directives and that they were subjected to a conformity assessment procedure provided for by the Directives. Member States are also required to take the necessary measures to protect the CE marking.
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