Malta has a number of quarry operators that are engaged in the extraction of hardstone through blasting operations. Currently there are no laws that regulate the permissible or allowable levels of vibrations generated from quarries when extracting rock by means of explosives. Albeit, the ERA has prepared and published a Guidance Document for Vibration Monitoring of Quarry Blasting and TORs on the limits of vibration that British Standards deduce as acceptable from quarries that use explosives to extract rock. The provisions of the guidelines are included in the permits of the quarries so as to ascertain that minimal impact from the activity is generated onto the environment. The purpose of these guidelines is to improve environmental performance by providing quarry operators with details as to how and what is required in order to monitor vibrations from blasting operations. Maximum vibration levels that shall be considered acceptable are also specified.

Apart from providing details on the parameters that need to be monitored, these guidelines clarify responsibilities of the operators, stipulate threshold levels for vibration monitoring and determine other specifications related to location, design and sensitivity of the monitoring equipment. In addition, the TORs also provide guidance on the documentation that needs to be submitted to the Authority prior to the commencement, and upon completion of the blasting operations.

The monitoring reports can be viewed here.

Guidance Document

Guidance on Vibration Monitoring and Blasting in Quarries


Last Updated Date: 17/09/2020