chapter  1
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Abstract This paper presents a proposal on how to classify steel containments on the basis of generalized safety considerations. Due to the fact that the structural behaviour and operation of containments exhibits additional features, which go beyond those of the safety aspects of usual building structures, an extended set of safety classes could be established allowing for the different risks connected with the consequences of struc­ tural failure. Keywords: Steel containments, safety concept, effect of loading, structural behaviour, safety classes.