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Tukes withdrew 118 dangerous electrical products from the market last year

Publication date 28.1.2021 8.32 | Published in English on 28.1.2021 at 12.07
Press release

The Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency (Tukes) ordered companies to withdraw a total of 118 dangerous electrical products from the market last year. The highest number of defects was found in chargers, transformers and various LED luminaires. The same product groups are on the list of the most dangerous products year after year, which proves that their manufacturers or importers do not always check their safety sufficiently.

Tukes monitors the market’s electrical products both in brick-and-mortar shops and online shops. In 2020, Tukes’ inspectors inspected over 1,200 shops that sell electrical products. The number of inspections in brick-and-mortar shops has reduced in the past years. The coronavirus epidemic affected the number last year, and in the longer term, monitoring focuses more and more on online shops.

Tukes tested 346 electrical products last year. As a result of the tests, a total of 118 products were withdrawn from the market. Of these, the most severe 15 were recalled from consumers. In 2019, 19 such products were recalled, and in the year before that, 46. 

“Consumers buy more electrical products from online shops outside Finland and the EU. The authoritative power of Finland or the EU cannot reach these online shops. In practice, this means that consumers purchasing products from outside the EU are personally responsible for the consequences if the product is unsafe or causes damage”, says Seppo Niemi, senior officer at Tukes. 

Manufacturers, importers and sellers are liable for the safety of electrical products

“The same product groups contain the highest numbers of dangerous and faulty electrical products year after year. The largest group is LED luminaires and different chargers and transformers. This proves that the manufacturers and importers do not always check their safety sufficiently”, Niemi says.

“The production chains of electrical products can be very complex, and an electrical product can contain several parts that the final manufacturer puts together and sells as a finished product. The manufacture and importation of safe electrical products requires companies to manage several things, such as ensuring the safety of each product and range of devices as well as sufficient self-monitoring and quality control”, Niemi continues.

The importer, manufacturer and seller of the electrical product are liable for its safety. The authorities do not inspect electrical products in advance, as many might think. The practice of mandatory preliminary inspections of electrical products ceased 25 years ago after joining the EU.

Tukes catches dangerous electrical products well

Tukes targets its monitoring to suspicious products based on their risks, or to new product groups and brands.  

“We use different European market surveillance databases in our monitoring. We also collaborate actively with other market surveillance authorities in the EU, and participate in cooperation projects”, says Niemi. 

Tukes constantly finds non-compliant electrical products from the markets that should be restricted or withdrawn.  Targeting the monitoring has been effective. Last year, 31% of the tested electrical products were dangerous or faulty to the degree that their sales had to be restricted with prohibition decisions. The companies liable for products that had less severe faults received notices asking the companies to rectify the issues found in testing no later than by the next production lot. For the tested part, 28% of the electrical products were in order.

You can find further information on the products that were withdrawn from the market from the Tukes market surveillance register. You can report a product you suspect dangerous with the form on Tukes’ website.

Further information: Seppo Niemi, senior officer, tel. +358 29 5052 167, [email protected]

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