Australia: Safety guidance on concentrations of particular chemicals in certain consumer goods


The ACCC has published guidance on safe concentrations of particular chemicals in consumer goods. The guidance prescribes concentrations of chemicals, below which a safety concern does not exist. It includes a list of 22 hazardous aromatic amines which can be derived from certain hazardous azo dyes in clothing, textiles and leather articles. Guidance is also provided for safe concentrations of formaldehyde in clothing and textiles.

via Safety guidance on concentrations of particular chemicals in certain consumer goods.

21st October 2014

Second knock-off USB charger explodes


She bought the knock-off charger for $10 from Paddy’s Markets as a gift for her son Daniel on his 14th birthday last Sunday but, by Monday evening, the device was a blackened wreck.

Ms Sommerville, from Kanahooka near Wollongong, said she heard a loud bang – ‘‘like metal hitting metal’’ – and saw a flash of light coming from Daniel’s room.

‘‘Daniel came out of his bedroom with a stunned look on his face. He said, ‘the charger’,’’ Ms Sommerville said.

‘‘The whole house smelt like gun powder. I was shocked.’’

The explosion caused the electricity supply to short circuit in three bedrooms, and at one of the loungeroom power points.

‘‘Who knows what would have happened if we didn’t have a circuit breaker,’’ Ms Sommerville said.

‘‘After hearing about the other woman that got killed by it, we’re really thinking how seriously lucky Daniel is.’’

via Second knock-off USB charger explodes.

Product safety & standards


  • Note: This article talks of Australian Product Safety laws and regulations, as they relate to the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) so is of general interest. However it doesn’t specifically cover safety of electrical equipment which is mandated under State laws. You can find the Electrical safety regulations information at http://www.erac.gov.au/ for the laws and regulations and regulators which supplement and complement the ACL for electrical safety.

Extract from the news article below:

If you sell products Australian customers, including the sale of products online, you must meet product safety requirements under Australian Consumer Law. If you’re a supplier or manufacturer, you are legally obligated to comply with mandatory Australian safety standards and only market safe products. Mandatory standards are law, and there are penalties and consequences for selling products that do not comply.

via Product safety & standards.

Warning over USB chargers after woman dies from apparent electrocution


Authorities are warning consumers against buying rip-off USB-style chargers after a young woman wearing headphones and holding her laptop was found dead with burns on her ears and chest, in an apparent electrocution.

The woman’s death is under investigation by police, and Fair Trading was unable to release any further details….

she was found with a lap top and headphones in her ears.”[She had] burns on both ears and her chest,”…

the rip-off, cheap chargers were low quality plastic that could melt.

The devices found by Fair Trading had no insulation on (mains) pins or approval marks.

 

Consumers who have already bought unapproved and non-compliant USB-style chargers, used to charge phones and tablets, are advised to bend the pins on the chargers and throw them away immediately.

 

People should also not use any electrical devices while they are plugged in and charging.

via Warning over USB chargers after woman dies from apparent electrocution.

Baby bath aids – Product safety bulletin


This bulletin covers the mandatory product safety standard for baby bath aids and the need to properly label these products.

In Australia, between 1997 and 2005, six infants under 13 months drowned while in a baby bath aid.

According to the Royal Life Saving Society of Australia, children under two years of age are most vulnerable to drowning or near drowning in the bath. The incidents almost always occur when the competent adult supervising the child leaves the child unattended—even if it is for less than a minute. Children can drown within seconds in very little water.

The mandatory standard aims to protect children from the possibility of drowning by providing a permanent warning alerting the parent or caregiver that a baby should never be left alone in the bath or left in the care of another child.
Baby bath aids – Product safety bulletin.

EESS equipment registration (Australia) transitional arrangements update


Extracts from an email and notice received from the ERAC Secretariat, dated 28 February 2014, republished with permission:

IMPORTANT NOTICE ON EESS REGISTRATION

  • Queensland introduced the EESS on 1 March 2013 with a transition phase extending to 28 February 2014. Due to the ongoing transition in other jurisdictions the EESS requirements after 1 March 2014 are:
  • If a Responsible Supplier has taken all reasonable actions for registration they will be considered as having met the requirements for registration as far as can be expected (This is due to some Certificates not yet being available on the national database).
  • Private certifiers can now upload their certificates to the EESS database. Regulators will continue to work through options to have NSW Fair Trading certificates details added to the national certification database.
  • To assist Responsible Suppliers, any level 3 equipment that is currently registered, or registered after 1 March 2014, will not require renewal of registration until further notice (the original equipment registration expiry date on the database will not trigger a requirement to renew).

See the PDF document in the link below for all the details and the fine print…

1 march 2014 EESS transitional final

It is understood that these transitional arrangements will be periodically reviewed. Further details should be placed on the official EESS web site later this week.

DISCLAIMER: As usual, this information is provided in good faith and is subject to interpretation and individual circumstances. No liability of any kind will be accepted arising from the provision or application of this information. Suppliers are expected to make their own independent legal and professional enquiries regarding their own business arrangements.

(Australia) Minister warns against dodgy energy saving devices


Minister for Fair Trading Stuart Ayres and NSW Energy & Water Ombudsman (EWON) Clare Petre today issued a joint warning to all consumers to be on the look-out for cold callers and online traders claiming to sell energy saving devices for domestic use.

Mr Ayres said NSW Fair Trading had investigated a number of consumer complaints about the devices, which can cost up to $2,000 each.

“We have proved under stringent testing conditions that these devices are a complete con,” he said.

To watch a video of the power saving devices being tested, go to Fair Trading’s YouTube channel at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ky1MotsVLGU

via Minister warns against dodgy energy saving devices.

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