Bitumen, a naturally occurring substance, is relatively inert, has a low volatility, a very low water solubility and, as such, enjoys a safe record of use as a construction product. The RBA is committed to the consolidation of the industry's existing safety record in relation to the handling of liquid bitumen and to the further promotion of best practice handling procedures.

Most bitumen safety hazards arise from the handling of bitumen in an elevated temperature. To prevent burns it is advised that those handling bitumen wear full-body protection. Guidance on suitable protective clothing can be obtained from your local bitumen supplier. Bitumen suppliers can also assist with on-site safety training and can provide specialist literature on safe handling procedures.

For general information on implementing a safe handling policy contact the Eurobitume UK's Technical Office by emailing

Guide to Safe Delivery of Bitumen – UK Edition

Guide_to_Safe_Delivery_of_BitumenThe Guide to Safe Delivery of Bitumen sets the industry benchmark for the delivery, receipt and storage of bitumen products through the definition of best practices and minimum standards.

The UK Edition, co-ordinated by the Eurobitume UK's HS&E Committee, replaces the Eurobitume UK Code of Practice for the Safe Delivery of Bitumen Products and is designed to further improve safety standards and promote the importance of safety within the UK bitumen industry.

The Guide has been further developed by Eurobitume members and is intended to raise awareness of safety issues within the bitumen delivery process and to highlight the responsibilities of those involved within the supply chain. It builds on experience in France, Germany, the UK and the USA.

  •     Basic delivery site conditions
  •     Personal protective equipment
  •     Delivery vehicle equipment
  •     The operation and maintenance of storage tanks and associated pipework
  •     Procedures for deliveries
  •     Bitumen Discharge Permit
  •     Training in handling and transportation
  •     Advice on the treatment of bitumen burns
  •     Site and delivery audits
  •     Risk assessment

A copy of the Guide to Safe Delivery of Bitumen – UK Edition can be obtained from bitumen suppliers, by contacting the Eurobitume UK Technical Director's Office at  or by downloading it here:

Guidance for Safe Bitumen Tank Management

There are around 325 asphalt plants in the UK involving approximately 1300 bitumen storage tanks. Spillages from these bitumen storage tanks as a result of over filling have a high potential for serious injury as bitumen is stored at high temperatures and has a large thermal capacity.

This document explains the fundamental principles that need to be adopted at all asphalt plants, for the safe operation of bitumen storage tanks, to reduce the risk of occurrence of a potentially serious incident.

This guide has been produced by the Refined Bitumen Association and the Mineral Products Association.

  • To view the guidance for safe bitumen tank management as a PDF download, please click hereGUIDANCE_FOR_SAFE_BITUMEN_TANK_MANAGEMENT_Withbdr
  • To view the guidance on returning bitumen tanks to service, please click here.
  • To download the Toolbox Talk on Personal Protective Equipment, please click here.
  • To download the Toolbox Talk Emergency Shower, please click here
  • To view the Position Paper on the use of Ground-Based Pumps for Bitumen Discharge at Customer Sites, please click here.
  • To view the guidance on Emergency Safety Showers for bitumen deliveries, please click here. (Note: this document is currently under review)
  • To view the guidance on  Safety Footwear for Bitumen Delivery Drivers, please click here.
  • To view the New Hot Storage Tank Construction Guidelines, please click here.
  • To view the guidance on the Design and Use of Ground Based Pumps, please click here.
  • To view the industry best practice guidance on the Manufacture, Maintenance and Use of Bitumen Tank-Vehicles, please click here.
  • “Hazard” and “Risk” have very different meanings. See how they differ here.

Eurobitume UK Burns Card

All persons working with hot bitumen should be familiar with the first aid procedures recommended for the treatment of burns.

Mineral Products Association – Annual Health & Safety Best Practice Awards

Eurobitume UK and the Mineral Products Association (MPA) share a common objective, which is to promote the best safe working practices within the industries they represent. To visit the MPA website, please click here: