||Harmful effects of potentially toxic elements (PTE’s) in soils relate to their geochemically reactive fraction. To assess the degree of the reactivity, specific extractions or models are needed. Here we applied a 0.43 M HNO3 chemical extraction to assess reactive pools of a broad range of PTE’s in 136 contaminated and non-contaminated soils. Furthermore we derived Freundlich-type models based on commonly available soil properties (pH, organic carbon and clay) as well as extended models that used other properties such as amorphous Al and Fe oxides and evaluated their possible use in risk assessment. The approach allowed to predict the reactivity of As, Hg, Co, U, Ba, Se, Sb, Mo, Li, Be (r2: 0.55–0.90) elements not previously included in such studies, as well as that of Cd, Zn, Cu, Pb, Ni and Cr (r2: 0.73–0.90). The inclusion of pH, organic carbon and clay improved the performance of all models except for Be and Mo, although the role of clay is not completely clear and requires further investigation. The ability of amorphous metal oxides to affect the reactivity of As, Hg, Cu, Ni, Cr, Sb, Mo and Li was expressed by the models in agreement with known geochemical processes leading to the retention of PTE’s by the solid matrix. Hence, such approach can be a useful tool to account for regional differences in soil properties during the identification of risk areas and constitute a significantly more powerful tool than the analysis of total pools of PTE’s in soils.