Transporting explosives

You need a Recipient Competent Authority (RCA) document to move explosives from place to place (except within the same site such as a factory or quarry).

This applies to all explosives; there are some exemptions to transfer regulations such as small quantities of small arms ammunition being transferred for the recipient’s private use. This does not cover commercial transfer of ammunition. 

Moving black powder, small arms ammunition and model rockets

You are responsible for the explosives throughout any journey and you must comply with the regulations at every stage.

If you are collecting explosives from a supplier you will have to show either your explosives certificate with the RCA element incorporated, or your explosives certificate and a separate RCA document. 

Where an explosives is being used by an historical or re-enactment society the RCA element is only relevant if you move off the re-enactment site or use a public road.

If you load sporting ammunition for your own use you do not require an RCA document. However, buyers or sellers of bulk components will need an RCA document and have to comply with the other requirements.

It is normal practice for the Health and Safety Executive to issue an RCA document that runs for the same time as the ER2014 certificate, where applicable.

If you do not have an explosives certificate but require an RCA document, please contact the HSE Explosives Inspectorate.


Explosives Licensing team
Firearms and Explosives Licensing Unit
Devon & Cornwall Police
Middlemoor, Exeter
Tel: 01392 226221

Non Emergency Directory (NED)

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