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Regulated products

Regulated products and services

This page contains:


Introduction

EU and free movement of goods


General product safety requirement


Defective product liability


General duties of manufacturers under health and safety legislation

Office for Product Safety and Standards


List of specific regulated products and services


Introduction

These pages deal with:


* the general obligations on producers and certain suppliers to ensure that a product placed on the market is a safe product and is free from defects;


* specific products and services which are subject to special regulation.

Specific products and services are regulated under a wide range of legislation. Much UK legislation is in the field of consumer protection and implements one or more EU Directives. This is mostly done by statutory instrument, although there are instances where the implementing measure is a piece of primary legislation.

EU and free movement of goods

The EU Commission has information on the implementation of EU product rules. There is a a description of EU legislation, policies and practical arrangements relating to the free movement of goods in the EU and EEA and from third countries, including harmonisation of laws and CE marking of products.

General product safety requirement

A producer is under an obligation to ensure that a product placed on the market is a safe product [the General Product Safety Regulations 2005 reg. 5]R.
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Defective product liability

Part I of the Consumer Protection Act 1987 (CPA) sets out a scheme dealing with civil liability for unsafe goods whereby the producer of an unsafe product or, as the case may be, another person in the chain of supply, is held strictly liable in damages with respect to any defect in those goods which causes damage.
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General duties of manufacturers under health and safety at work legislation

The Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 s.6 imposes a general duty on any person who designs, manufactures, imports or supplies any article for use at work or any article of fairground equipment to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, that the article is so designed and constructed that it will be safe and without risks to health at all times when it is being set, used, cleaned or maintained by a person at work; see further Health and safety at work

Office for Product Safety and Standards

The Government announced on 21 January 2018 announced the creation of a new national oversight body tasked with identifying consumer risks and managing responses to large-scale product recalls and repairs. The Office for Product Safety (OPS) will provide support and advice for local authority Trading Standards teams, co-ordinate work across local authorities where action is needed on a national scale and  ensure the UK continues to carry out appropriate border checks on imported products once the UK leaves the European Union.

OPS will be based in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and will have a budget of £12 million per year when fully operational.

The Office was created as part of the Government’s response to the Working Group on Product Recalls and Safety. Established in October 2016 by former Consumer Minister Margot James, the group of product and fire safety experts was brought together to build on the recommendations made by Lynn Faulds Wood in her independent review into consumer product recalls.

What's new

1712/2019

Whirlpool washing machine recall following intervention by OPSSr

Subject: Product liability/OPSS

Source: GOV.UK Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy and Office for Product Safety and Standards

Followings urgent action by the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS), Whirlpool UK Appliances Ltd has announced a recall campaign to begin in January 2020. Consumers are advised to contact Whirlpool to arrange a replacement.

The advice sets out that there is a risk that the door locks of affected machines could catch fire due to overheating during the washing process. Affected consumers are advised to unplug their machine and register with Whirlpool for a replacement.

Under the recall, consumers with an affected washing machine will be entitled to a free replacement.

 

17/12/2019

FCA fines PPC for misleading consumers and banks

Subject: Claims management services

Source: Financial Conduct Authority

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has fined Professional Personal Claims Limited (PPC) £70,000 for misleading consumers through its websites and printed materials.

PPC’s websites and printed materials prominently used the logos of five major banks which was liable to mislead consumers into believing they were submitting redress claims for mis-sold payment protection insurance (PPI) directly to their banks, rather than engaging PPC as a CMC to pursue claims on their behalf in return for payment of a success fee.

PPC also failed to present accurate, fully formed, detailed and specific complaints to banks. It had submitted Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) questionnaires to banks on behalf of different consumers. The questionnaires in part contained identical factual allegations where evidence specific to each client should have been presented.

PPC was originally investigated and fined by the previous regulator for CMCs, the Claims Management Regulator (CMR), under the CMR’s prior regulatory framework applicable before 1 April 2019. PPC’s business focused on claims for redress for mis-sold PPI. PPC appealed on 21 December 2018 to the First-tier Tribunal against the CMR’s penalty notice. While the appeal was pending, the FCA took over regulation of CMCs from the CMR. The FCA therefore replaced the CMR as the respondent to PPC’s pending appeal. On 16 September 2019, after reviewing the evidence put forward by the FCA, PPC withdrew its appeal, and the FCA therefore imposed the £70,000 fine on PPC for the failings identified in the CMR’s penalty notice.

This decision follows the transfer of regulatory responsibility for claims management companies (CMCs) to the FCA on 1 April 2019.

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07/03/2018 Guide unveiled to protect consumer product safety recalls

Source: GOV.UK

The first ever government backed code of practice for product safety recalls has been published. The new guidance will ‘help businesses understand what they need to do if something goes wrong with their product’ and follows recommendations from safety experts commissioned by the government.

The code of practice includes details on how a business can monitor the safety of products and plan for a recall, and how Market Surveillance Authorities such as local authority trading standards can support businesses in monitoring incidents and their implementation of corrective action. The Code of Practice, developed by BSI, is the ‘first major initiative for the new Office, launched by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in 2018’. It follows a recommendation by the Working Group on Products Recalls and Safety to introduce such a Code to further strengthen the UK’s already tough product safety regime.

05/03/2018 Product Safety Office issues first enforcement action

Source: GOV.UK

The Office for Product Safety and Standards has carried out its first enforcement action, a fine of £4,000 for timber operator Hardwood Dimensions (Holdings) Limited for breaching regulations prohibiting the importing and sale of illegally harvested timber. The company failed to check the legality of a batch of timber from Cameroon when placing it on the market to ensure it originated from legal sources.

The action is the first since the government set up the new office earlier in 2018.

Hardwood Dimensions pleaded guilty at the first hearing and was fined £4,000 plus a victim surcharge of £170 and prosecution costs of £3,273.

List of specific regulated products and services

The following is a list of some products and services which are subject to special regulation.

Many of the products are regulated at the EU level and the list may mention only the implementing UK regulations; the underlying EU legislation must be consulted as well. The list is not comprehensive.

The distinction between a regulated product or service and a regulated business is not always clear. If in doubt, consult the separate section dealing with Regulated businesses.

The CPA (Part II) empowers the Secretary of State to make safety regulations to secure that specified goods or categories of goods are safe, or not made available to persons in whose hands they would be unsafe, and that appropriate information is provided in respect of such goods.

Many product safety regulations have been revoked as part of the Government’s  ‘Red Tape Challenge’ (see also the Product Safety (Revocation) Regulations 2012 SI 2012 No 1815).

Other products and services are regulated under separate legislation.

Age restricted goods and services

 

Aerosol Dispensers: Aerosol Dispensers Regulations 2009, SI 2009 No 2824

Air-conditioners (with regard to energy labelling of household products): Energy Information Regulations 2011, SI 2011 No 1524

Alcohol sale

Animals (live) and animal products: Guidance on importing and exporting live animals or animal products

Asbestos products: Asbestos Products (Safety) Regulations 1985, SI 1985 No 2042

Batteries: the placing on the market and distribution of batteries in the UK is regulated; see • Batteries and Accumulators (Placing on the Market) Regulations 2008

Bicycles: Pedal Bicycles (Safety) Regulations 2010, SI 2010 No 198)

Brakes linings: Road Vehicles (Brake Linings Safety) Regulations 1999, SI 1999/2978

Ceramic Articles (in contact with food): Ceramic Articles in Contact with Food (England) Regulations 2006, SI 2006 No 1179; Ceramic Articles in Contact with Food (Wales) Regulations 2006, SI 2006 No 1704

Chemicals and substances (dangerous): Chemicals (Hazard Information and Packaging for Supply) Regulations 2009, SI 2009 No 716; REACH Enforcement Regulations 2008, SI 2008 No 2852

Cigarette Lighter Refill: Cigarette Lighter Refill (Safety) Regulations 1999, SI 1999 No 1844

Coal (domestic burning)

Construction products: Construction Products Regulations 2013, SI 2013 No 1387)

Cosmetic products: Cosmetic Products Enforcement Regulations 2013, SI 2013 No 1478

Dishwashers (with regard to energy labelling of household products): Energy Information Regulations 2011, SI 2011 No 1524

Drugs and medicines: Human Medicines Regulations 2012, SI 2012 No 1916

e-cigarettes: see Tobacco and nicotine-inhaling products

Electrical Equipment: Electrical Equipment (Safety) Regulations 1994, SI 1994 No 260

Electric ovens (with regard to energy labelling of household products); Energy Information Regulations 2011, SI 2011 No 1524)

Entertainment

Event ticket resales: see Ticket agents and selling

Explosives

Filament Lamps for Vehicles: Filament Lamps for Vehicles (Safety) Regulations 1982, SI 1982 No 444

Fireworks and pyrotechnics: Fireworks Regulations 2004, SI 2004/1836; Fireworks (Safety) Regulations 1997, SI 1997 No 2294; Pyrotechnic Articles (Safety) Regulations 2010, SI 2010 No 1554

Flowers: see Plants

Food: see Food selling and manufacturing

Food imitations (Food Imitations (Safety) Regulations 1989 (SI 1989 No 1291))

Fruit: see Plants

Gas Appliances: Gas Appliances (Safety) Regulations 1995, SI 1995 No 1629

21/03/2018

Gas Appliances (Enforcement) and Miscellaneous Amendments Regulations 2018

SI 2018/389: Provisions made provide for the enforcement in the UK of Regulation (EU) 2016/426 (the EU Gas Appliances Regulation) on appliances burning gaseous fuels, repealing Directive 2009/142/EC. The EU Gas Appliances Regulation is aimed at ensuring gas appliances and fittings entering the EU market fulfil a high level of protection for the health and safety of users. The Regulations will come into force on 21 April 2018

Gold, silver, platinum, palladium

The use of the words ‘silver’, ‘palladium’, ‘gold’ and ‘platinum’ is regulated. Under the Hallmarking Act 1973 all dealers supplying precious metal items must display a notice explaining the approved hallmarks. This must be in the form produced by the British Hallmarking Council. See: Hallmarking: how businesses can comply with the law

Holidays and Travel

Human Tissue

Lamps and luminaires (with regard to energy labelling of household products):: Energy Information Regulations 2011, SI 2011 No 1524

Lifts and lift safety components: Lifts Regulations 1997, SI 1997 No 831

Machinery: Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008, SI 2008 No 1597

Medicinal products and devices

Microbeads

29/01/2018: Microbeads to be banned in Wales

Source: https://consultations.gov.wales/consultations/banning-manufacture-and-sale-cosmetics-and-personal-care-products-containing-plastic

Motor vehicles (Directive 2007/46/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5 September 2007 establishing a framework for the approval of motor vehicles and their trailers, and of systems, components and separate technical units intended for such vehicles)

Music licences for public performances

Oil Heaters: Oil Heaters (Safety) Regulations 1977, SI 1977 No 167

Nightwear: Nightwear (Safety) Regulations 1985, SI 1985 No 2043

Ozone depleting substances

Packaging

Palladium: see Gold, silver, platinum, palladium

Personal Protective Equipment (Enforcement) Regulations 2018 Subject: Regulated products

SI 2018/390: Provisions are made to provide for the enforcement of Regulation (EU) 2016/425 (the EU PPE Regulation) on personal protective equipment, which repeals Directive 89/686/EEC in the UK. Enforcement authorities in the UK (such as Trading Standards Authorities, the Health and Safety Executive, and the Office for Nuclear Regulation) are enabled to take action against 'economic operators' (ie manufacturers, importers and distributors) if they do not comply with the obligations in the EU PPE Regulation. The Regulations will come into force on 21 April 2018.

Plants

Platinum: see Gold, silver, platinum, palladium

Plugs and Sockets etc: Safety) Regulations 1994, SI 1994 No 1768

Pressure Systems: Simple Pressure Vessels (Safety) Regulations 1991, SI 1991 No 2741; Pressure Equipment Regulations 1999, SI 1999 No 2001; Pressure Systems Safety Regulations 2000, SI 2000 No 128

Protective equipment and systems: Equipment and Protective Systems Intended for Use in Potentially Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 1996, SI 1996 No 192; Personal Protective Equipment Regulations 2002, SI 2002 No 1144

Psychoactive substances

Refrigerators, freezers and combinations (with regard to energy labelling of household products): Energy Information Regulations 2011, SI 2011 No 1524

Road Vehicles: Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986; Motor Vehicle Tyres (Safety) Regulations 1994, SI 1994 No 3117; Road Vehicles (Brake Linings Safety) Regulations 1999, SI 1999 No 978; Filament Lamps for Vehicles (Safety) Regulations 1982, SI 1982 No 444

Silver: see Gold, silver, platinum, palladium

Soft drinks levy: levy on sugar content

Televisions (with regard to energy labelling of household products): Energy Information Regulations 2011, SI 2011 No 1524)

Teats and dummies: N-nitrosamines and N-nitrosatable Substances in Elastomer or Rubber Teats and Dummies (Safety) Regulations 1995, SI 1995 No 1012

Ticket agents and selling

Timeshares: see Holidays and Travel

Tobacco and nicotine-inhaling products

Toys: Toys (Safety) Regulations 1995, SI 1995 No 204

Travel: see Holidays and Travel

Tree felling

Tyres: Motor Vehicle Tyres (Safety) Regulations 1994, SI 1994 No 3117  

Vegetables: see Plants

Vehicle registration number plates

Veterinary Medicines: Veterinary Medicines Regulations 2013, SI 2013 No 2033

Veterinary medicine wholesale dealer's authorisation (WDA)

Washing machines, driers and combinations (with regard to energy labelling of household products):  Energy Information Regulations 2011, SI 2011 No 1524

Wood (wet,for burning)

[Page updated: 05/02/2020]


More information>


General product safety requirement

Defective product liability