Working with explosives

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

Do you work with explosives? You must keep to strict rules. The Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate (ILT) checks whether companies and citizens follow the rules with regard to working with explosives for civil use.

In short, if you work with explosives, you must at least:

Applying for recognition

You are only allowed to produce, transport, store, use and trade in explosives if you are a recognised body.

To become a recognised body you need:

  • accreditation for your business. You can apply for this at the police station in the region where your business is located.
  • accreditation for every employee who works with explosives. You can apply for this at the police station in the region where your employee resides.

Accreditation is valid for a maximum of 5 years. After which you have to re-apply.

Registration and certification

Persons working with explosives need to register with VOMES (in Dutch). You can find the registration forms in Dutch on VOMES' website (pdfs). If you have received your professional qualifications in another EU member state, an EEA state or Switzerland, you also need to register with VOMES. If you intend to work temporary or occasionally in the Netherlands your professional qualifications may be assessed before you start work for the 1st time.

Companies that work in detecting explosive remnants of war (ERW) need to be certified by VOMES (in Dutch).

Registering explosives

You must record everything you do with explosives in a register. The register lists the explosives you receive, use or supply to other companies. Explosives have a unique identification code, which must be entered into the register. You are not allowed to trade in explosives that do not have an identification code. You must keep the register for at least 10 years.

Storing explosives

If you store explosives, the storage facility must meet environmental and construction regulations. To certify this, you must apply for an All-in-one permit (Wabo) permit from your municipality (in Dutch), or, in some cases, from the provincial authorities (in Dutch).

Mandatory health and safety certificate

If you work with explosives you need a health and safety certificate. A certified company inspects your company to ensure your employees, processes and services meet all requirements.

Transport of explosives

If you want to transport explosives, the driver must have an ADR certificate. You also require a transfer licence:

  • Do you transport explosives for civil use inside the Netherlands? You must apply for a transfer licence from the municipal executive of the destination municipality.
  • Do you transport explosives for civil use within the European Union? You need permission from the Member State from which you export the explosives, but also from the Member States you will use for transit and final delivery.
  • Do you transport explosives for civil use into the Netherlands from another EU Member State? You must apply for permission (pdf, in Dutch) from the Human Environment and Transport Inspectorate (Inspectie Leefomgeving en Transport, ILT).
  • If you transport explosives for mining purposes, the recipient needs to apply for a permit from the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (EZK).

Digital application with Message Box

With Message Box you can apply for the accreditation and transfer licence digitally to various organisations. Message Box is a secure email system which allows you, the entrepreneur, to exchange digital messages with Dutch government organisations.

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO