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Article posted Monday 3rd April 2017

It is easy to think of the coffee machine in your café, canteen, customer waiting area, etc. as simply a glorified kettle with some fancy electronics, however some types of coffee machine (e.g. cappuccino makers) will include a pressure vessel used during the production of hot beverages for the purpose of generating, storing and supplying steam and hot water.

If the pressure system in a coffee machine was to fail people could be struck by flying debris or scalded by the released steam. In 2010 a coffee machine at a Sainsbury’s store exploded and several people were injured when a pressure relief valve failed to operate.

If the coffee machine includes steam at pressure then it will fall under the Pressure Systems Safety Regulations 2000 and will require regular safety inspections under a written scheme of examination.

So what do I need to do?

The first thing is to find out whether your coffee machine includes steam at pressure.

In many cases this will be obvious and the manufacturer’s documentation should make it clear whether your coffee machine incorporates a steam boiler, if not the presence of a pressure gauge would suggest that one is included.

If your coffee machine does include a steam pressure system then the next step is to make sure that safety inspections and a written scheme of examination are in place.

If your coffee machine is leased it is likely that the actual owner of the machine will be arranging the necessary inspections. However if they are not or you are the owner of the machine, this can be arranged through your insurance provider.

For further information please speak to your normal Cooke & Mason contact on 01777 869900 or by email using

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