CPIN and the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) at BEIS collaborated to improve the product recall system for consumers. An OPSS spokesperson says: “Standards are part of the toolkit for tackling consumer problems, working alongside education and legislation. We had evidence that the product recall system was not well understood and therefore was not protecting consumers from unsafe products. We worked with BSI, through the Consumer Forum Council, to develop a PAS on Product Recalls to outline best practices for businesses and regulators. This proved to be a quick and effective way to raise awareness and improve processes.”
Domestic appliance fires
Which? research and data provide valuable evidence to support CPIN representatives in their work. In 2018 CPIN collaborated with Which?, Electrical Safety First and the London Fire Brigade to improve safety standards for domestic appliances to reduce the risk of fire. A spokesperson from Which? says: “Standards play an important role in consumer protection by providing a framework that helps businesses comply with legislation. British Standards are also used in a lot of the comparative product testing that Which? undertakes.”
Button battery safety: New British Standard sets out safety requirements
Download for free: PAS 7055:2021 - Button and coin batteries. Safety requirements. Specification
The newly published PAS 7055:2021 specifies the safety requirements for button and coin batteries. CPIN Rep Michelle McKenna, who advocated for consumers on this standard, explains why the PAS is so important for consumer safety, and why CPIN involvement was crucial.
"Consumers expect that if a product is dangerous, there will be a warning attached. In practice, many button batteries, or products that contain them, have come with inadequate or non-existent safety warnings." Michelle McKenna
Read the full blog here
Consumer Forum members, CPIN, RoSPA, Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT), and Electrical Safety First have been working closely together to make sure that standards for button and cell batteries minimize potential risks to children.
Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT):
Katrina Phillips, Chief Executive of the Child Accident Prevention Trust, said: “We have been collaborating with CPIN to contribute to a new standard for button batteries to make it harder for children to access potentially lethal batteries in everyday household products such as remote controls, gaming headsets and tea lights. Standards are vital in helping to protect children and reassuring parents that what they’re buying is safe. The organisations have all worked hard together with other stakeholders to produce a standard for button batteries.’’
Ashley Martin from RoSPA said: ‘This is an important step in protecting consumers and helping businesses adopt a consistent approach to product design with button batteries.
-We are proud to be one of the consumer forum members who collaborated in the steering group to advise on the new PAS 7055 safety standard for button batteries ‘
Electrical Safety First:
"In recent years, a number of children have suffered appalling injuries from ingesting coin or button batteries, which are of a similar size and shape to some sweets. As the recognised expert in home electrical safety, Electrical Safety First was delighted to work together in collaboration with other members of the Consumer Forum to develop the new PAS 7055 for these batteries. We believe this new standard will do much to help reduce the likelihood of further tragic accidents. And, as a free download from the BSI website, it can be widely distributed and easily accessible – particularly for small and medium-sized businesses.’’