Latest update: 02/06/2022

Guidance for employers on controlling risks from chemicals - Interface between Chemicals Agents Directive and REACH at the workplace

This Guidance was prepared by the Advisory Committee for Safety and Health at Work (ACSH) in 2010 to explain the interface between the Chemical Agents Directive and the REACH regulation.

The Working Party on Chemicals of the Advisory Committee for Safety and Health at Work (ACSH) took the initiative to develop the guide to explain to employers how the Chemical Agents Directive 98/24/EEC (CAD) and the REACH Regulation 1907/2006/EC are interlinked. This guide sets out, step by step, how employers can meet their obligations under REACH and the CAD, both of which apply to those who handle chemical substances. In particular, it demonstrates that one particular process of assessing risks can often meet the relevant requirements of both REACH and CAD.


  • Introduction
  • How REACH provides information
  • A short comparison of REACH and CAD
  • How the REACH and CAD requirements fit together
  • Step by step approach for employers
  • Summary of key points
  • Annex 1: Other aspects of REACH that may affect employers (Uses not supported by the registrant,Using substances of very high concern or substances that are restricted)
  • Annex 2: Exposure reference levels (General, Occupational Exposure Limits (OELs), Acceptable Operator Exposure Levels (AOELs), Derived No-Effect Levels (DNELs) and Prescribed No-Effect Concentrations (PNECs), Discussion


The guidance dates from 2010 and since then the legislation, in particular the REACH Regulation, has undergone several amendments.  Nevertheless, the information in this guide remains relevant. The basic principles of both the CAD and REACH have not been changed. Additional information on the European legislation on chemical agents is available in the OSHwiki article Dangerous substances (chemical and biological) and on the website of the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA).

Publication details
Published by: Directorate-General for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion (European Commission)
Publication date: October 2010
Number of pages: 16 pp.


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