General information

9.1.1. Competent authorities should make arrangements to provide information to the public living or working near a major hazard installation. These arrangements should require that works management make available such information in co-operation with the local authority for all existing installations, and for new installations before they start to operate.

9.1.2. This information should include:
the designation of the installation as a major hazard installation;
a broad description in simple terms of the major hazard activities in the installation, the hazardous substances used and how they are controlled;
ways of recognising that an emergency is occurring (alarm system);
the action that the public should take in the event of an emergency;
the known effects to the public of a major accident;
remedial treatment appropriate for anyone affected by a major accident.

9.1.3. Advice on the distance from the major hazard installation within which the public are to be informed should be obtained from the Group of Experts or elsewhere.

9.1.4. All different available forms of communicating this information should be considered in order to make these procedures as effective as possible, taking into account the different target groups (schools, hospitals, etc.).

9.1.5. The general information should periodically be repeated and if necessary updated to allow for any movement of the population into and out of the locality.

9.1.6. Local authorities in co-operation with works managements should assess whether the general information has been effectively communicated and understood, and take appropriate action to revise it if necessary.

9.1.7. Arrangements for informing the public should allow for the existence of major hazard installations operating near a territory that comes under a different local authority or country from the one in which the installation is situated. Provision should be made for people living near the installation but in the adjoining territory to be similarly informed.

Information during an emergency

9.2.1. Works managements should provide information to the public living or working near a major hazard installation, giving warning of the occurrence of a major accident as soon as possible after it has taken place.

9.2.2. This should be carried out according to the procedures detailed in the general information.

9.2.3. Works managements should regularly update this information during an emergency, for example with the co-operation of the media, particularly if it becomes necessary for the public to take action different from that given in earlier information.

Information after a major accident

9.3.1. Works managements should provide information for communication to the public who have been affected by a major accident, on the outcome of their investigation into the accident, and on the short- and long-term effects on the public and the environment.

9.3.2. After a major accident, works managements should review the general information in consultation with local authorities and the public to see if any revisions are necessary.

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