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Marketing and Use of Explosive Precursors


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#1 redcone

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 05:25 PM

Hi Folks,

Sorry if this has been covered before but I came across this proposal from the EU.

http://ec.europa.eu/...E_REGLEMENT.pdf

In a nutshell it would make buying the following items illegal without a licence:
Hydrogen Peroxide > 12% w/w
Potassium or Sodium Chlorate and Perchlorate
Nitric Acid > 3% w/w
Ammonium Nitrate.

[Posession of existing stock OK for 3 years]


The following items if purchased may be reported as "suspiscous":

Sulfuric Acid
Hexamine
Sodium/potassium Nitrate
Calcium Nitrate.

I don't use anything off the first list, but it would be annoying if I couldn't get hold of sulfuric as I do use that sometimes for home chemistry experiments :-(

Anbody else seen this?


Regards,
Redcone.

Edited by redcone, 23 September 2010 - 05:34 PM.


#2 portfire

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 05:44 PM

Is it just me or does this sort of crap start to get depressing!!!! We've got to do this, we cant do that, you need this to do that!!!!! Fascists!
"I reject your reality and substitute my own" Adam Savage

#3 exat808

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 06:11 PM

Is it just me or does this sort of crap start to get depressing!!!! We've got to do this, we cant do that, you need this to do that!!!!! Fascists!



The EU proposal is driven by the actions of terrorists over the past 20 years. The substances that they seek to control are all well known precursors in home made explosive (HME) substances. It unfortunately has a knock on effect to those who would seek to possess the chemicals in the pursuit of a peaceful hobby.
Please dont blame the legislators or enforcers - do what you can to bring an end to the activities of terrorists who seek to destroy our way of life.
Controlling precursors is not a new concept. There is already legislation that controls/prohibits the sale and possession of precursors used for synthetic drug manufacture.

#4 redcone

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 06:24 PM

The EU proposal is driven by the actions of terrorists over the past 20 years. The substances that they seek to control are all well known precursors in home made explosive (HME) substances. It unfortunately has a knock on effect to those who would seek to possess the chemicals in the pursuit of a peaceful hobby.
Please dont blame the legislators or enforcers - do what you can to bring an end to the activities of terrorists who seek to destroy our way of life.
Controlling precursors is not a new concept. There is already legislation that controls/prohibits the sale and possession of precursors used for synthetic drug manufacture.


The interesting thing will be the requirements needed for a licence and how this interacts with any concessions that the UKPS are able to get with the ongoing UK law regarding explosives. If it prevents someone losing their life in a terrorist attack then that's a good thing - provided it is done correctly and doesn't just become the thin end of the wedge that ends up further harming any legitimate amateur science. The worrying thing is that they can carry on adding to the list, and knowing how the EU works, that's exactly what they'll do!

#5 exat808

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 06:36 PM

The interesting thing will be the requirements needed for a licence and how this interacts with any concessions that the UKPS are able to get with the ongoing UK law regarding explosives. If it prevents someone losing their life in a terrorist attack then that's a good thing - provided it is done correctly and doesn't just become the thin end of the wedge that ends up further harming any legitimate amateur science. The worrying thing is that they can carry on adding to the list, and knowing how the EU works, that's exactly what they'll do!


The EU proposal is the first step in a protracted legislative chain of events that may take a few years to come to fruition. The proposal will have to be transposed into an EU Directive which will then require member states to make domestic regulations to enact the requirements. The domestic regulations will go through a period of consultation at which point those who wish to make representations may do so.
Yes, I agree that any list of controlled precursors may be added to but that is the way it should be. It must be dynamic enough to allow for short notice additions that are driven by trends in terrorism.

#6 portfire

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 06:46 PM

Exat... I wasn't having ago, at all, sorry if it came across that way. BUT "banning" or licensing the chemicals the we (the hobbyist) use is IMO, a set back to the advancements that can be made......By "blokes in sheds"

I for one am up for legislation....I hate the "b" word with a passion! I can see where the HSE is coming from, I really can BUT there has to be a cut-off point!
"I reject your reality and substitute my own" Adam Savage

#7 darkfang77

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 07:35 PM

Just started reading some of the proposal, haven't got to the meat of it yet but there's a couple of things I don't get.
What's to stop the licensed people passing the chemicals off underhandly? This would mean that the licensed holders would sell it off at ridiculous prices at their advantage for those who don't have licenses.

Also, why ban nitric acid but not nitrates, any chemist worth his salt knows that any nitrate salt can be reversed to nitric acid.
Sulphuric acid - car batteries.
And if a terrorist really wanted to get his hands on ammonium nitrate, etc. He could easily get it from cold packs,

Whats to stop a terrorist making a explosive if one was needed?
All the proposal does is making it slightly harder.

Edit: Just remembered, potassium chlorate can be made via bleach and KCl.

Edited by darkfang77, 23 September 2010 - 07:44 PM.


#8 dr thrust

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 07:46 PM

yep , i suspect the amateur pyro will simply "stock up".
i only use one item off the top list potassium perchlorate,for experimental rocket motors,but its relatively hard to get now, and many people simply build perc cells and make there own, so i cant see what banning it will achieve?

#9 darkfang77

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 07:56 PM

yep , i suspect the amateur pyro will simply "stock up".
i only use one item off the top list potassium perchlorate,for experimental rocket motors,but its relatively hard to get now, and many people simply build perc cells and make there own, so i cant see what banning it will achieve?


Probably so if there is another terrorist attack, the authorities can release a statement something along the lines of:

"We did everything we could, we even tried to ban potassium chlorate even though the EU's top scientists have told us that people can make it from bleach. What can we do?"

IMO, I think it's "peace of mind", thing. I also suspect that people will start to panic buy ahead of the proposal (thanks for heads-up, joking =9).
Any idea when the proposal will come into force, if it is even going forward.

Edited by darkfang77, 23 September 2010 - 07:56 PM.


#10 exat808

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 08:10 PM

Probably so if there is another terrorist attack, the authorities can release a statement something along the lines of:

"We did everything we could, we even tried to ban potassium chlorate even though the EU's top scientists have told us that people can make it from bleach. What can we do?"

IMO, I think it's "peace of mind", thing. I also suspect that people will start to panic buy ahead of the proposal (thanks for heads-up, joking =9).
Any idea when the proposal will come into force, if it is even going forward.



I think that some balance is needed here. Use of the word "ban" is evocative. What any proposed EU Directive will seek to do is to "control" acquisition and possession of certain chemicals by means of domestic legislation.
Black Powder is controlled in the same way. If you can justify why you need it then the authorities will allow you to acquire it. ( See a recent thread re BP licences).So if and when these EU proposals are submitted for consultation before being implemented in the UK as legislation people such as yourselves should have strong arguments in place as to why you should be permited to acquire the specified chemicals.
I am sure that there will be many hurdles and obstacles to overcome before we get anywhere near to drafting a set of regulations to control explosive precursors.

#11 Vic

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 08:18 PM

How many lives will be saved in the EU if this legislation is past? Very few, I would think.

A terrorist hell bent on destruction is going to find a way if one door is closed they will try another.
Will that mean even more legislation eventually resulting in alienating the very people you are trying to protect?
Freud. Artists, in this view, are people who may avoid neurosis and perversion by sublimating their impulses in their work.

#12 darkfang77

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 08:29 PM

I think that some balance is needed here. Use of the word "ban" is evocative. What any proposed EU Directive will seek to do is to "control" acquisition and possession of certain chemicals by means of domestic legislation.
Black Powder is controlled in the same way. If you can justify why you need it then the authorities will allow you to acquire it. ( See a recent thread re BP licences).So if and when these EU proposals are submitted for consultation before being implemented in the UK as legislation people such as yourselves should have strong arguments in place as to why you should be permited to acquire the specified chemicals.
I am sure that there will be many hurdles and obstacles to overcome before we get anywhere near to drafting a set of regulations to control explosive precursors.


Yes, but potassium nitrate is one of the chemicals used to make BP.
When they use the word "suspicious", I suspect what they are trying to say is that they will keep a tab on the buyer via tailing.
I'm sorry, but is "making fireworks" a justifyable reason to "need" BP? Call it a hunch but I would say no.

The end line is that hobby fireworks will never be a justifyable reason to acquire chemicals of any sort in the current climate! So any argument that we put forward that we "deserve" to be able to acquire these chemicals in the first place will be undoubtably shot down.

#13 exat808

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 08:36 PM

How many lives will be saved in the EU if this legislation is past? Very few, I would think.



We will never know how many lives have been saved or will be saved by legislation of any type.
In the UK we have seen that by controlling certain explosives and imposing strict security requirements on those who legitimately keep those explosives the terrorist has been driven away from using commercial explosives and forced to rely upon home made explosives. The 7/7 bombings, the failed 21/7 plot, the Haymarket attempt , the Glasgow airport attack, and the liquid explosive plot all bear testimony to how control of explosives in the UK does work as in all these cases the terrorist has been driven to look elsewhere for substances that will give the desired effect.
Sadly, some precursors may need to be controlled. If it makes my life safer then so be it.

#14 phildunford

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 08:39 PM

They banned hand guns - the effect? Legitimate shooters can't persue their hobby & there are more hand guns in the hands of crims than ever. Crims don't usually obtain things through legitimate channels - that is traceable.

This is just 'gold plating' of existing legislation that gradually erodes our freedoms, but if we complain we are accused of being irresponsible.

Hopefully if the 'more freedom less control' mantra of the current administration is more than just talk, this will not be agreed in the UK. On the other hand the EU usually seems to get it's own way and all governments want more control - whatever they say in opposition.

Said it before but:

'They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety'. (Ben Franklin)
Teaching moft plainly, and withall moft exactly, the composing of all manner of fire-works for tryumph and recreation (John Bate 1635)
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#15 darkfang77

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Posted 23 September 2010 - 08:51 PM

We will never know how many lives have been saved or will be saved by legislation of any type.
In the UK we have seen that by controlling certain explosives and imposing strict security requirements on those who legitimately keep those explosives the terrorist has been driven away from using commercial explosives and forced to rely upon home made explosives. The 7/7 bombings, the failed 21/7 plot, the Haymarket attempt , the Glasgow airport attack, and the liquid explosive plot all bear testimony to how control of explosives in the UK does work as in all these cases the terrorist has been driven to look elsewhere for substances that will give the desired effect.
Sadly, some precursors may need to be controlled. If it makes my life safer then so be it.


What is the reasoning behind this? I do not understand.
By restricting commericially available oxidisers/explosives how does this make your life safer?
You said it yourself. Terrorists will engage in homemade means, would a well equipped or well funded terrorist be able to synthesise chlorates/nitrates in purities which are compete with commercial qualities? Terrorists are out to make bombs, not fireworks, they don't need chemicals which are precise and high quality, all they need is functionality.

I can name a very failed bomb plot, in fact two, which have failed in the past. I know that in both these infamous bomb plots they had nothing to do whatsoever with restrictions imposed by the EU. So how does restricting explosives increase the probability of each terrorist attack failing?




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