Atex Hoist

ATEX Hoist

What is an Atex hoist? Firstly the word ATEX is derived from ATmosphere EXplosibles. ATEX is used to describe any equipment which can be used in environments with potentially explosive atmospheres; for example an ATEX rated lever hoist. 

An Atex hoist provides explosion protection. They are designed to prevent a potential source of ignition to any incidence of explosive mixtures. ATEX rated equipment is used in a wide range of industries where these types of hazards occur. Good examples of industries which may use an atex hoist include: chemical plants, waste disposal, energy production, gas suppliers, metal processing, paint shops, pharmaceuticals, oil refineries and many more, these all use combustible materials and will all need to lift materials/goods at some point so Atex equipment is essential.

Lifting Hoists Direct can supply a range of atex hoist systems with ratings suitable for these scenarios. We have ATEX chain blocks / manual chain hoists, Lever hoists and Air hoists in a range of lifting capacities and zone classifications. All our atex hoist devices come complete with full Atex certification.

Here we have provided some very basic information regarding ATEX rated equipment and explosion proof hoist devices, and the environments they are used in for your convenience as an atex hoist rating can vary. It is your responsibility to carry out necessary research to ensure all safety aspects are correctly covered.

Explosive Environments

Flammable gasses, mists, vapours and combustible dusts can all cause explosive atmospheres.

There are 3 factors required to cause an explosion

A = Flammable substance i.e. gas, dust, mist, vapour

B= Oxidizing agent i.e. oxygen (in the air)

C= Ignition Source i.e. Spark, flame, hot surface, static

atex explosion


Explosion Protection

An explosion proof hoist has special explosion protection to prevent explosions occurring by the removal of potential sources of ignition by using specialised components and ongoing monitoring of potentially hazardous situations. There are three types of explosion protection within atex regulations;

PRIMARY PROTECTION       = Preventing the formation of explosive atmospheres

SECONDARY PROTECTION = Preventing the ignition of potential explosive atmospheres

TERTIARY PROTECTION      = Restricting the effects of an explosion.


Atex Zones Explained

There are six atex rating zone classifications in which an Atex hoist may be used, they cover the different types of explosive environments; three for gas and vapour hazards and three for dust hazards. Atex zone 1 and Atex zone 2 are the most common. An explosion proof hoist will fit into one of these categories. Here are the atex zones explained in a little more detail to help you choose the correct atex hoist and comply with atex regulations.

Atex Zone 0 (Gas/Vapours)  Areas where explosive mixtures are always present or present for long periods.

Atex Zone 1 (Gas/Vapours)    Areas where explosive mixtures are likely to occur in normal operating conditions.

Atex Zone 2 (Gas/Vapours)  Areas where explosive mixtures are not likely to occur in normal operation & is it does occur only for a short time.

Atex ZONE 20 (Dust)    Areas where explosive mixtures are always present or there for long periods.

Atex ZONE 21 (Dust)     Areas where explosive mixtures are likely to occur in normal operating conditions.

Atex ZONE 22 (Dust)     Areas where explosive mixtures are unlikely to occur in normal operating     conditions and if it does, only for a short time.

Equipment Groups, Zone Classification, Protection Levels & Categories

l MiningM (1)Mechanical Equipment – Energised

VERY HIGH protection – equipment must continue to operate in explosive atmosphere

0, 1, 2 (gasses)

20, 21, 22 (dust)

ll MiningM (2)Mechanical Equipment – De-energised

HIGH protection. Equipment must be shut down if explosive atmosphere occurs

1, 2 (gasses)

21, 22 (dust)

ll Non-Mining1VERY HIGH protection, where dust, gas or vapour mixtures are present continuously or for long periods0, 1, 2 (gasses)

20, 21, 22 (dust)

ll Non-Mining2HIGH level protection where dust, gas or vapour mixtures are likely to occur occasionally1, 2 (gasses)

21, 22 (dust)

ll  Non-Mining3NORMAL protection where gasses, dust or vapour mixtures are NOT likely to occur & if they do only for a short time.2 (gasses)

22 (dust)


Temperatures can have a major effect within explosive environments and extreme caution should be implemented. The table below shows the temperature at which a gaseous mixture will ignite spontaneously without a further ignition source.

T2300◦C>300 – 450◦C
T3200◦C>200 – 300◦C
T4135◦C>135 – 200◦C
T5100◦C>100 – 135◦C
T685◦C>85 – 100◦C

Atex Rated Markings Decrypted

All ATEX rated equipment should be clearly marked to ensure it is easily identifiable as to which group, category, zone and protection type it is suitable for. This guide shows you how to interpret the marks. Atex certification should always be issued, retained and referred to with these types of hoisting devices.

ATEX markings

 We hope you have found this Atex hoist page informative, please contact us if you need more information.

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