Information

CE Marking for steel and aluminium fabricators and processors

The construction industry is facing one of the most significant changes for a decade as CE Marking of construction products become mandatory in all Member states throughout the European Union.

If your organisation is involved in the manufacture of structural metal components or kits, you now need to demonstrate that your products comply with BS EN 1090-1 as well as prove product conformance through mandatory CE marking. Compliance will allow you to continue selling your products within the EU.

Since 01 July 2014 it is a criminal offence to supply and trade structural metalwork on the European market unless it adheres to this standard and carries a legitimate CE mark.

Commercial / Contractual Enforcement. The short answer being - the client or customer.

But it is the manufacture or distributor that is at risk if they supply, deliver or install a construction product without certification to EN 1090.

The requirement or instruction from the client may be documented in several ways such as:

Vague Example: Steel work to comply with CE Marking

Slightly Better example: Steelwork to comply with CE Marking to EN 1090 EXC 2

Good Example: Steelwork to comply with EN 1090-1, EN 1090-2 Execution class 2

The enquiry, drawings or client information may not include any of the above information but that does not mean the requirement to comply with EN 1090 is not there…

Any of the next list of statements or references gives an indication that the product being requested falls within scope of EN 1090.

  1. Calculations are prepared to meet current Eurocodes.
  2. Drawings or specification state NSSS requirements
  3. The Building or project requires building control sign off
  4. The building or project must meet NHBC requirements.
  5. The project is constructed under CDM requirements
  6. If any of the above apply (and this is not a complete listing) then EN 1090 requirements will apply to construction products.

Legal Enforcement

  • Trading Standards are the Policing Body
  • The Construction Products Regulations 2013
  • UK legislation providing for enforcement of the CPR.
  • Punishable by imprisonment for up to 3 months and a fine of up to £5,000 on summary conviction:
  • Failure to CE mark and provide Declaration of Performance is a breach of duty by manufacturer, importer or distributor.

If you are involved in the manufacture of structural steelwork products, as from the 1st July 2014 it has been a legal requirement for manufactures of structural components or kits to adhere to the BS EN1090-1 standards.

The EN 1090-1 standards are European standards that regulate the fabrication and assembly of steel and aluminium structures and are recognised by the Construction Products Regulation (CPR).

BS EN 1090-1 consists of five parts:

BS EN 1090-1 (Execution of steel structures and aluminium structures – Technical requirements for steel structures) is the harmonised European standard covering fabricated structural steelwork. It comprises three parts:

  1. EN 1090-1: CE Marking - details the requirements for assessing and verifying product or service conformity
  2. EN 1090-2: Details the technical requirements in the manufacture and assembly of steel structures
  3. EN 1090-3: Details the technical requirements in the manufacture and assembly aluminium structures
  4. BS EN 1090-4: Technical requirements for cold-formed structural steel elements and cold-formed structures for roof, ceiling, floor and wall applications
  5. BS EN 1090-5: Technical requirements for cold-formed structural aluminium elements and cold-formed structures for roof, ceiling, floor and wall applications

Manufacturers Responsibility

If you are producing a steel or aluminium construction product which is being sold in the UK or wider EAA, there is a legal requirement for you to CE Mark this product. This means that when this product is complete and delivered to your client, whether in return for payment or free of charge, it must be accompanied by the correct documentation.

The standard places legal obligations on manufacturers, distributors and importers of construction products used within the EU to CE Mark their products that fall into the scope of BS EN 1090-1.

Client and/or Contractors Responsibility

The client or main contractor should appoint a steelwork contractor with an Execution Class equal to that required for the project, as outlined by BS EN 1090-1.

CE Marking compliance with the requirements of BS EN 1090-1 places obligations on the contractor that are onerous and take significant time to put into place.

The standard is relevant to a number of disciplines within an organisation including;

  • Civil and Structural engineers
  • Construction engineers
  • Directors, general and site managers
  • Quality assurance and quality control personnel
  • Procurement personnel
  • Inspection and non-destructive testing personnel

EN 1090-1:2009+A1:2011 – Mandatory from 1st July 2014

The Construction Products Directive (CPD) of 1989 was introduced in order to provide a common framework across the whole of the European Union to ensure the integrity of buildings and construction works. Because fabricated steel components are deemed "safety critical”, if your Company are involved in the manufacture or supply of these products then under the CPD it is now a legal requirement for your business to adhere to the stringent requirements of BS EN 1090. You must also ensure that your products are appropriately CE marked. Introducing BS EN 1090 and its constituent parts BS EN 1090 (Execution of steel structures and aluminium structures – Technical requirements for steel structures) is the harmonised European standard covering fabricated structural steelwork. It comprises three parts:

EN 1090-1: CE Marking- details the requirements for assessing and verifying product or service conformity.

EN 1090-2: Details the technical requirements in the manufacture and assembly of steel structures.

EN 1090-3: Details the technical requirements in the manufacture and assembly of aluminium structures.

The standard affects all companies who manufacture, process and sell steel, stainless (EN 1090-2) and aluminium (EN 1090-3) structures and structural products within the EU. The standard will be relevant to a number of disciplines within an organisation including; Designers, specifiers, Procurement Departments, Quantity Surveyors, Structural engineers, Civil engineers Construction Engineers Directors, general and site managers Quality assurance and quality control personnel, Inspection and non-destructive testing personnel 

Products identified as in scope to EN 1090-1
Document Source CEN/TR 17052 issued Jan 2017

The following steel and aluminium products are covered by the scope of EN 1090-1, when the intended use comprises a structural function. This list is indicative and non-exhaustive. Structural components / Structural components for:

  • A.1 Balconies,
  • A.2 Balustrades if fulfilling the function of a barrier 1) Structural Engineer/ Designer must state Balustrade to be manufactured to EN 1090 as per the requirements within CEN/TR 17052
  • A.3 Base plates,
  • A.4 Beams not covered by EN 10025-1,
  • A.5 Beam clamps without ETA,
  • A.6 Bended products from hot rolled beams and steel plates,
  • A.7 Bracing,
  • A.8 Bridges (incl. road-, railway- and footbridges, pipe bridges, moving bridges),
  • A.9 Buildings,
  • A.10 Canopy framing,
  • A.11 Carports,
  • A.12 Catwalks,
  • A.13 Cellular Beams,
  • A.14 Chimneys not covered by EN 1856-1 or EN 1856-2 or EN 13084-7,
  • A.15 Cold-formed purlins and cladding rails,
  • A.16 Cold-formed sheeting for roofing and cladding if structural,
  • A.17 Cold-formed decking for use in composite steel and concrete floors,
  • A.18 Columns,
  • A.19 Crane supporting structures including crane runway beams, crane rails and structural end stops,
  • A.20 Culverts used as a bridge-like structure to carry traffic,
  • A.21 Curved and bent beams,
  • A.22 Cut to size components from hot rolled products,
  • A.23 Fire escapes,
  • A.24 Girders not covered by EN 10025-1,
  • A.25 Grandstands and stadia,
  • A.26 Grillage beams and girders,
  • A.27 Handrails (Barriers/ Edge Protection),
  • A.28 Hangers not covered by EN 845-1 and ETAG 015,
  • A.29 Lighting columns neither covered by EN 40-5 or EN 40-6 nor by an ETA,
  • A.30 Lintels not covered by EN 845-2,
  • A.31 Load bearing fences,
  • A.32 Marquee framing,
  • A.33 Machined or bended aluminium semi products for use as structural components,
  • A.34 Machinery supports, if integral part of the load bearing structure of the construction works,
  • A.35 Masonry structures not covered by EN 845-1, EN 845-2, or ETAG 029,
  • A.36 Metal frame building kits without ETA,
  • A.37 Mezzanine floors,
  • A.38 Noise barriers, not covered by EN 14388,
  • A.39 Opening frames for floors, walls and roofs, if integral part of the load bearing structure of the construction works,
  • A.40 Pipeline supporting structures and pipe supporting structures,
  • A.41 Plant and machinery, if integral part of the load bearing structure of the construction works
  • A.42 Plate girders (welded or bolted or riveted),
  • A.43 Prefabricated building units without ETA,
  • A.44 Prefabricated pile foundations without ETA,
  • A.45 Predrilled components from hot rolled beams and steel plates,
  • A.46 Purlins,
  • A.47 Racking and shelving systems, if integral part of the load bearing structure of the construction works,
  • A.48 Ramps, if integral part of the load bearing structure of the construction works,
  • A.49 Sag rods,
  • A.50 Sign and gantry girders,
  • A.51 Silos,
  • A.52 Stairs without ETA,
  • A.53 Structural frames for buildings, warehouses, schools, hospitals, dwellings, industrial and agricultural sheds,
  • A.54 Structural frames for shelters,
  • A.55 Structural steel components for composite steel and concrete structures,
  • A.56 Tanks that are not covered by EN 12285-2,
  • A.57 Tension rods without ETA,
  • A.58 Timber structures excluding fasteners,
  • A.59 Towers and masts,
  • A.60 Trusses,
  • A.61 Tubular beams and columns,
  • A.62 Walkways, incl. open mesh flooring, if integral part of the load bearing structure of the construction works,
  • A.63 Wharfs, docks and piers,
  • A.64 Winter gardens and green houses.

STEP 1 - Determine whether your product falls within the scope

The first step is to determine, based on intended use, whether or not your product(s) fall into the scope of EN 1090, and so need to be CE Marked in accordance to this standard.

This is the responsibility of the manufacturer. As most products are bespoke and have multiple intended uses an exhaustive list is not possible.

A better appreciation of the scope of EN 1090-1 may be achieved by considering the following:

  • Is the construction product, as defined by the CPR, made from steel or aluminium?
  • Is the product load-bearing?
  • Has the product been installed in a permanent manner?
  • Is the product within the scope of EN 1090-1?
  • Does the product fall into the scope of another harmonized standard?

Once it has been established that you will need to CE Mark one or more of your products, the next task for you as a manufacturer is to determine which Execution Class you require.

STEP 2 - Identify the correct Execution Class

From 1st July 2014 all fabricated structural steelwork delivered to site has to be CE Marked. To comply with the new mandatory regulations only steelwork contractors with an Execution Class equal to that required for a project should be considered.

BS EN 1090 sets out four Execution Classes (EXC’s), outlined below. These classes are based on the end use of the structure and how critical it would be if it failed:

  • EXC1 – e.g. Agricultural buildings (Welded construction up to and including Grade S275 material)
  • EXC2 – e.g. Residential or Commercial structures
  • EXC3 – e.g. Bridges or Stadia type buildings
  • EXC4 – e.g. Special structures (long-span bridges, frames for structures within the nuclear sector and structures within high seismic active areas) etc.

STEP 3 - Factory Production Control Assessment/Certification

You can now select a notified body (link to list) to have your factory production control assessed against your stated Execution Class.

If you already have a robust factory production control system or ISO 9001 in place, you’re already on your way to achieving CE Marking.

As part of achieving a CE Mark, you will require third-party assessment and certification from a notified body.

Assessment

A notified body will carry out:

  • Initial inspection of your manufacturing plant
  • Initial inspection of your FPC
  • Continuous surveillance, assessment and approval of your FPC, which will typically include an annual audit to ensure continued competence to the declared Execution Class

The notified body will then issue an FPC certificate and Welding Certificate identifying the Execution Class that you have achieved.

Certification

To gain certification and be awarded a CE Mark, you are required to undertake the following:

  • Initial type-testing of your products
  • Factory Production Control which includes:
  • Implementation of FPC system procedures
  • Appointment of a responsible welding coordinator (RWC)
  • Implementation of welding quality management system (WQMS) procedures
  • Further testing of samples taken at the factory in accordance with the prescribed test plan

You can now start CE Marking and producing your declaration of performance for each product.

FPCFactory Production control
NCRNon-Conforming Report
NDENon-Destructive Examination
NDTNon-Destructive Testing
WPQRWeld Procedure Qualifications Records
PWHTPost Weld Heat Treatment
RWCResponsible Welding Coordinator
IWCInternal Welding Coordinator
UKASUnited Kingdom Accreditation Service
WPSWeld Procedure Specifications
ITCInitial Type Calculation
ITTInitial Type Testing
NPDNo Performance Declared
DOPDeclaration of Performance
COCCertificate of conformity
MPCSManufacturer provided component specification
PPCSPurchaser provided component specification

To confirm or check the correct Execution class has been stated. The following four steps will guide you through the execution class selection process:

1. Define the consequence class

1.1.Select a service category
1.2.Select a production category
1.3.Use the results of steps 1, 2 and 3 and a matrix to determine your execution class.

2. Define the consequence class

The purpose of defining a consequence class is to ensure that buildings (and other structures) are constructed with the appropriate level of quality control. Consequence classes are based on building type, building height (number of storeys ), floor plan area per storey (for retail) and occupancy. A structure, or a part of it, could also contain components with different consequence classes. In most cases, CC2 will be suitable.

Class

Description

Examples*

CC3

High consequence

Stadiums and concert halls for 5,000+ people, buildings storing
hazardous substances, public buildings where consequence of failure is high

CC2

Medium consequence

Most multi-storey residential and commercial buildings, hotels,
hospitals, education establishments and car parks

CC1

Low consequence

Agricultural or storage buildings Areas where people do not normally enter.

 *Refer to Annex A, BS EN 1991-1-7 (Eurocode 1) for more examples of building categorization

Categorization of Consequence Classes 

Class

Description

CC3

All buildings defined below as Class 2 Lower or Upper Consequence Class that exceed the limits on area and number of storeys

All buildings in which members of the public are admitted in significant numbers

Stadia accommodating more than 5,000 spectators

Buildings containing hazardous substances and/or processes

CC2b

Hotels,flats,apartments and other residential buildings greater than 4 storeys but not exceeding 15 storeys.

Educational buildings greater than a single storey but not exceeding 15 storeys

Retail premises greater than 3 storeys but not exceeding 15 storeys

Hospitals not exceeding 3 storeys

Offices greater than 4 storeys but not exceeding 15 storeys

All buildings to which the public are admitted and which contain floor area exceeding 2,000m2 but not exceeding 5,000m2 per each storey

Car parks not exceeding 6 storeys

CC2a

5 storey single occupancy houses

Hotels not exceeding 4 storeys

Flats, apartments and other residential buildings not exceeding 4 storeys

Offices not exceeding 4 storeys

Industrial buildings not exceeding 3 storeys

Retail premises not exceeding 3 storeys or less than 1,00m2 floor area in each storey

Single storey educational buildings

All buildings not exceeding 2 storeys to which the public are admitted not exceeding 2,000m2 per storey

CC1

Single occupancy house not exceeding 4 storeys

Agricultural Buildings

Building into which people rarely go providing no part of the building is closer to another building, or area where people go, than a distance 1 ½ times the building height.

3. Select a service category 

Service categories reflect the risk arising from the actions to which the structure and its parts are likely to be exposed during erection and use, such as fatigue and likelihood of seismic actions. They also look at the stress levels in the components in relation to their resistance.

Service categories are determined from Table B.1 of BS EN 1090-2. In the UK, for instance, SC1 will generally be appropriate.

Category

Criteria

SC1

Structures/components designed for quasi static actions only, e.g. buildings

Structures and components with their connections designed for seismic actions in regions with low seismic activity.

Structures and components designed for fatigue actions from cranes.

SC2

Structures/components designed for fatigue actions to EC3 (EN 1993 )such as bridges, Structures susceptible to vibrations caused by wind, crowd or rotating machinery
or located in regions with medium/high seismic activity

4. Select a production category

Production categories are determined by the risk arising from the fabrication complexity of the structure and its components. This may entail the application of particular techniques, procedures and controls.

Production categories are determined from Table B.2 of BS EN 1090-2 and it should be noted that a structure or part of a structure may contain components or structural details that belong to different production categories. However, the execution class is not always sensitive to the production category.

Categories

Criteria

PC1

Non-welded components or welded components from steel grades below S355

PC2

Welded components manufactured from steel grades from S355 and above

5. Use the results of steps 1, 2 and 3 and a matrix to determine the execution class

Once the consequence class, service category and production category have been determined for a building, Table B.3 of BS EN 1090-2 defines the corresponding execution class. In the UK, for instance, EXC2 will be applicable to most buildings. Where no execution class is specified, Clause 4.1.2 of BS EN 1090-2 states that EXC2 applies.

Consequence class

CC1

CC2

CC3

Service category

SC1

SC2

SC1

SC2

SC1

SC2

Production category

PC1

EXC1

EXC2

EXC2

EXC3

EXC3

EXC3

PC2

EXC2

EXC2

EXC2

EXC3

EXC3

EXC4

  • Alcumus ISOQAR Ltd
  • British Board of Agrement
  • BSI Assurance UK Ltd
  • TUV UK Ltd
  • Steel Construction Certification Scheme Ltd - SCCS
  • Centre for Assessment
  • TWI Certification Ltd
  • SGS United Kingdom Ltd
  • Exova (UK) Ltd trading as Exova BM TRADA
  • Lloyds Register Verification Ltd
  • LRQA
  • United Registrar of Systems
  • CEM International

CE Marking for steel and aluminium fabricators and processors