The Control of Major Accident Hazards (COMAH) Regulations ensure that businesses:

  • Take all necessary measures to prevent major accidents involving dangerous substances.
  • Limit the consequences to people and the environment of any major accidents which do occur.

Due to its size and the nature of activities conducted by QinetiQ at MOD Shoeburyness, the site is classified as an "upper-tier" COMAH site. Under the regulations, we are required to work with the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), Essex County Council, Southend-on-Sea City Council, Rochford District Council and the emergency services to keep local residents and businesses informed of:

  • the type of hazardous materials used on site
  • how we manage emergencies
  • how we would warn and inform in the unlikely event of a major accident.

Further information is available in on the HSE website and in the QinetiQ Public Safety Information leaflet.

If your house/business premises/building falls within the specified distance of the site boundary that forms the Public Information Zone (PIZ), we are required to advise you what action you should take in the unlikely event of a major accident or incident on the site that may affect you.

This notification is a requirement of the COMAH regulations. It does not represent any change in the business of the Range or increased risk to public safety. QinetiQ has an excellent safety track record and representatives from the Competent Authorities inspect and monitor site activities regularly to make sure that working practices and facilities meet with the required standards.

Is my house in the Public Information Zone?

If your postcode begins with SS3, there is a possibility that your address falls within the PIZ. You can check if your address is in the PIZ by calling the Helpline free on 0800 0560108.

If your address does fall within the PIZ, we advise you to register for the Shoeburyness Emergency Alert Service.

The Competent Authority comprises three organisations: the Health & Safety Executive (HSE), the Environment Agency (EA - for England and Wales) and the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency (SEPA). These three organisations are responsible for the enforcement of the COMAH Regulations.