(CNN) – The UK might be flooded with a “rising tide” of harmful products if the federal government does not reform its shopper rights techniques, shopper group Which? has warned in a new report — and the difficulty could possibly be compounded by Brexit.
After leaving the European Union, the UK can be excluded from its info-sharing networks and early-warning techniques about unsafe products available on the market, until it establishes an agreement to take care of access.
“Whether it is to make individuals’s safety the primary precedence, the government should safe entry to the European alert and knowledge sharing techniques after Brexit, as well as introduce major home reforms to ensure shoppers are properly shielded from unsafe merchandise,” Caroline Normand, director of advocacy at Which?, stated in a press release.
In accordance with Which?, the European Commission’s speedy-warning system Security Gate flagged 2,064 harmful non-meals products available on the market in 2018, in contrast with 1,542 in 2008 — an increase of greater than a 3rd.
Sue Davies, strategic policy companion at Which?, informed CNN that an enchancment in reporting techniques might have contributed to the rise, however referred to as the figures “regarding.”
Probably the most problematic product classes in 2018 have been toys and motor automobiles: There have been 655 safety alerts for toys, and 419 for motor automobiles.
An extra 200 alerts have been issued for clothing, textiles and style, 176 for electrical appliances and 121 for cosmetics.
This yr, Which? famous, merchandise including Honda automotive models with explosive airbags, a flammable child’s Stormtrooper costume and HP laptop computer batteries that pose a fireplace danger have already been recalled.
The buyer group has referred to as for the UK government to determine intelligence-sharing techniques with non-EU nations, along with maintaining access to present EU methods. Brexit will add “additional challenges,” Sue Davies stated, calling on the government to “put in place a very efficient system that makes it clear that product security is a priority.”
The government also needs to flip its Office for Product Safety and Requirements (OPSS) into an unbiased physique, Which? stated. Davies advised CNN, “The product security system in the UK is underneath strain.”
“The duty falls to native trading requirements officers who do a very good job,” Davies defined. “However there’s been really vital cuts to the service in some elements of the country.”
“Typically, native authorities are dealing with huge multinational corporations,” she stated.