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What are the different types of inspection ?

In all cases, an on-site inspection is the visit of one or several inspectors to the site of the installation to verify compliance with the laws and regulations relative to classified installations.

Most of the time, the purpose of the inspection is to verify compliance with the operating conditions (“operational requirements”) stipulated by a prefectural order specific to the installation, or by a ministerial order relating to the industrial activity sector concerned.

The purpose of an inspection can also be to verify that an installation has obtained a permit or made an initial declaration.

3Classification according to the operator’s level of information3

Inspections can be :

  • Announced : in writing informing the operator at least 48 hours in advance ;
  • Unannounced : the inspector arrives on site without initially informing the operator.

3Classification according to the purpose of the on-site inspection3

In order to adapt the inspection to the context of the installation, it can be :

  • targeted : the objective of the inspection is to analyse one or several parameters or workshops of the classified installation ;
  • general : the inspection will review all operating conditions and compliance with prefectural operational requirements.

Depending on the level of detail expected, the inspection can be :

  • in-depth : site monitoring requiring detailed preparation ;
  • general : this type of site monitoring does not require extensive preparation, only the inspector’s normal knowledge of the site (installations, administrative context, observations resulting from previous inspections etc.) ;
  • one-off (also called rapid) : this is a site monitoring which is neither a general nor an in-depth on-site inspection. A one-off on-site inspection only relates to a limited and targeted number of controls.

3Classification according to the nature of the inspection3

Inspections can be :

  • scheduled : programmed as part of an annual or multi-year planning process ; according to national priorities and regional issues ;
  • occasional : unplanned within the inspection programme and initiated by an event which was difficult to foresee (complaint, request from a third party, consequence of a formal notice to comply, accident, closure of activity etc.).