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Luxembourg

Luxembourg has a population of 480,000 and covers an area of 2,586 sq km. It is a representative democracy in the form of a constitutional monarchy. The Grand Duke, Head of State, forms the constitutional executive with the government. The nationally elected Chamber of Deputies shares the exercise of legislative power with the Grand Duke.

For administrative purposes Luxembourg is divided into 3 districts and 116 communes. The commune is an autonomous authority, operated by local representatives under the control of the central authority.

Organisational Structure and Background

Luxembourg has a central government legal metrology structure. The Service de Métrologie légale which, since its creation, was linked to the Administration des Contributions, has become part of an administration created in 2008 in the Ministry of Economy, the Institut luxembourgeois de la normalisation, de l'accréditation, de la sécurité et qualité des produits et services (ILNAS). Its main functions concern the verification of measuring instruments and the application of the legal units of measurement.

A uniform system of weights and measures was first introduced in Luxembourg in 1816, the metric system being brought in by a law of 1842. A Royal grand-ducal decree of 1882 provided more framework legislation and allocated the legal control of weights and measures to a special officer subordinated to the Direction des Contributions.

The amended grand-ducal regulation of 14 October 1981 implements the Council directive 80/181/EEC of 20 December 1979 on the approximation of the laws of the Member States relating to units of measurement.

Equipment Subject to National Controls

  • Simple length measures in trade use
  • Non-liquid volume measures
  • Liquid volume measures
  • Dipsticks
  • Medium and higher accuracy weights
  • Liquid volume metering instruments

    • Petroleum
    • Heating oil

  • Cold water meters
  • Gas volume meters
  • Electricity meters
  • Non-automatic weighing instruments

    • Self-indicating
    • Non self-indicating

  • Automatic weighing instruments

    • Discontinuous totalising
    • Continuous totalising (beltweighers)
    • Gravimetric filling
    • Rail weighbridges
    • Catch weighers

      • Checkweighers
      • Weight graders

    • Weigh/price labeller and weigh labeller

Type Approval

No type approvals service is provided.

Initial and subsequent Verifications

These are performed by the 3 engineers and 3 technical officers at the Service de Métrologie légale. Fees are set by law "Règlement grand-ducal du 31 octobre 2008 portant tarification des prestations du Service de métrologie légale", Mémorial A- Nr. 172 du 28 novembre 2008. The Memorial is the official published gazette of legislation.

The initial verification function is not subject to any external contracting out to private laboratories. There are no instrument manufacturers in Luxembourg and therefore no system of manufacturer self-declaration or EN29000 experience within the Service.

Inspection and Reverification

A mandatory reverification system operates in the Grand Duchy. Frequencies are specified in law:

trade weights 3 years
weighing instruments in trade use 3 years
petrol pumps 3 years
cold water meters
(subject to a 10 year replacement cycle)
10 years
weighing instruments used for medical or law enforcement purposes 3 years

In 2000 the Service inspected 1300 non-automatic weighing instruments with a 7 % failure rate. 1% of the 2000 petrol pumps inspected in the same period failed. Maximum permissible errors are generally based on mpe x 2 ; and mpe x 1 for petrol pumps.

Legal Metrology Practitioners Scope

The 3 engineers in the Service de Métrologie, who are also the Chief and Assistant Chief of the Service, are engineers in electronics or mechanics. The other officers are technicians or artisans. Staff entering the Service are subject to two years probation and training, including an examination. The Service will investigate complaints about instruments and short measure and will advise businesses on legal requirements. It also carries out control of volume and mass prepackages duties in accordance with the grand-ducal regulation of 19 octobre 1977.

Sanctions

There is no system of financial administrative penalties in Luxembourg. Cases may be taken to court where they involve the fraudulent or incorrect use of equipment. Prison sentences are possible, from 8 days up to a maximum of one year and/or a fine of between 62 and 25,000 EUR. Instruments in cases involving illicit profit may be confiscated. Instruments found to be exceeding mpe may be rejected and put out of service.

Directive 90/384/EEC

Luxembourg implemented the Directive by 'Règlement grand-ducal du 27 juillet 1992 portant application de la directive 90 / 384 / EEC du Conseil du 20 juin 1990 concernant l'harmonisation des législations des Etats membres relatives aux instruments de pesage à fonctionnement non automatique (Memorial A-No.55 du 31.07.1992)’.

Those instruments in Article 1(2)(a) category 4 were not previously subject to control by national legislation. The grand-ducal makes it an offence to use an instrument outside of its marked weighing range. The use of accuracy classes for specific applications is not prescribed. Applicable gravity value LUXEMBOURG: g = 9, 8096 m/s2.

Updated February 2009