Question

General Product Safety Regulations – What is a product?

by | 12 Jul 2017

My interpretation is that ‘anything’ that a landlord supplies to a tenant must be safe and is covered under the General Product Safety Regulations UNLESS there are other regulations that specifically cover that product e.g. a gas appliance. In your opinion, what ‘products’ are covered by the GPSRs? Things like the electrical installation, chimney, stoves (Multi-fuel and Wood Burning), oil installations, internal glazing, internal window blinds are all covered by safety standards and recommendations from industry bodies but from a safety perspective are not explicitly covered by their own ‘regulations’ so would they be considered ‘products’ and covered by the GPSRs?

Answer

1 Comment

  1. guildy

    Product is defined in the regulations as:

    “product” means a product which is intended for consumers or likely, under reasonably foreseeable conditions, to be used by consumers even if not intended for them and which is supplied or made available, whether for consideration or not, in the course of a commercial activity and whether it is new, used or reconditioned and includes a product that is supplied or made available to consumers for their own use in the context of providing a service. …

    As can be seen, “product” basically covers everything!

    However, in applying the regulations, the regs only apply as follows (highlights added by author):

    Each provision of these Regulations applies to a product in so far as there are no specific provisions with the same objective in rules of Community law governing the safety of the product  other than the GPS Directive.

    And continues …

    Where a product is subject to specific safety requirements imposed by rules of Community law other than the GPS Directive, these Regulations shall apply only to the aspects and risks or category of risks not covered by those requirements. This means that:

    • the definition of “safe product” and “dangerous product” … shall not apply to such a product in so far as concerns the risks or category of risks covered by the specific rules, and
    • the remainder of these Regulations shall apply except where there are specific provisions governing the aspects covered by those regulations with the same objective

    Therefore, if there are other regulations achieving a safety objective that is not in the General Product Safety Directive, those other regulations take precedence. But, if the individual regulations do not cover all aspects of safety, then, the General Product regs can take over for those missing aspects.

    As far as the UK is concerned, in our view, the gas and electric appliance regulations (for example) will generally take precedence because those regulations will cover most if not all aspects of safety.

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