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Some of the faulty phone charges that were seized in 2018. CCPC

Dodgy phone chargers and sunglasses among 34,000 products seized before they could be sold

Almost 350,000 potentially unsafe products were seized in Ireland last year.

ALMOST 350,000 POTENTIALLY unsafe products were seized by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission in Ireland last year.

Forty-two consignments containing 346,739 potentially unsafe products were seized by the CCPC and Revenue’s Customs Service in 2018.

The products included toys, sunglasses, kitchen appliances, electrical adaptors, chargers and hoverboards.

After examining the items, the CCPC found that 33,688 of them did not meet the relevant European Union and Irish safety regulations and standards, meaning they were not safe for use by consumers.

The risks ranged from potential eye damage from sunglasses which did not provide UVA/UVB protection to fire hazards arising from unsafe phone chargers.

The products in question were either re-exported or destroyed, according to the CCPC.

Commenting on the products seized in 2018, Isolde Goggin, CCPC chair, said thousands of potentially unsafe products are seized and tested every year “to ensure that goods placed on the Irish market do not pose a safety risk to consumers”. 

Goggin added that manufacturers, importers and distributors have a responsibility to ensure the products they sell are comply with all of the relevant safety regulations and standards.

“Failure to do so may not only result in financial loss to the trader but more importantly their products may cause physical harm to their customers,” she said. 

If we find that a trader has failed to fulfil their duties, we will not hesitate in taking appropriate measures, including seizure, forced destruction or re-exportation, to prevent unsafe products from being placed on the Irish market.


Addressing how Brexit could affect Irish businesses, Goggin said: “Once the UK leaves the Customs Union, it will become a third country and products from the UK will be treated the same as products which have originated from any other non-EU country, such as China or the United States.”

She said businesses that buy from a UK-based supplier will have to “comply with specific importers’ obligations under the relevant product safety regulations”.

“As we prepare for Brexit, we are working to raise awareness of these important changes,” Goggin added. 

Business Minister Heather Humphreys said companies need to take urgent action in this regard.

“Although the situation for many businesses remains unpredictable, the reality is we are quickly approaching October 31,” Humphreys said.

She added that supporting businesses and citizens to prepare for Brexit is a high priority for the government.

“We have been working hard to put a range of supports in place to help firms identify the actions they need to take now to prepare. I am strongly urging all businesses to avail of the resources we have made available to them,” Humphreys said. 

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