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Consumer protection: EU countries report 2,253 dangerous products


The EU states warned each other about many dangerous products in 2020, often in connection with Corona. Children's jackets with a risk of strangulation and hairy toy monkeys are also on the list.

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Imprint of an FFP2 mask: Not all respiratory protection really protects

Photo: Sven Hoppe / dpa

The EU states warned each other 2253 times about dangerous products in the past year.

More than every fourth case affected toys, said the responsible EU Commissioner Didier Reynders.

There have also been many cases related to the corona pandemic.

"It is very important to remove these products from the market."

In the EU rapid alert system for dangerous non-food products, 31 European countries and the EU Commission exchange information on dangerous products.

In this way, other countries can quickly check whether these products are also circulating on the domestic market and, for example, initiate recalls.

The number of reported cases in 2020 was at the level of the previous year.

However, the national authorities reacted a good 20 percent more often to the reported cases, for example with recalls.

Children toys are affected in almost a third of all cases

Children's toys were affected in 27 percent of the cases.

Reynders gave the example of a soft brown toy monkey that easily loses hair.

Small children could choke on it, said the Belgian.

Another example is a pink jacket that threatens to strangle children.

Motor vehicles (21 percent) and electrical appliances (10 percent) were also reported frequently.

Almost every tenth reported case (9 percent) is related to the corona pandemic, said Reynders.

Face masks were warned 161 times alone.

Reynders presented a white FFP2 mask whose filter was inadequate.

Instead of protecting against the virus, it may even promote a corona infection.

Warnings were also given against disinfectants with toxic chemicals or UV disinfection devices with excessive radiation.

After toys, the categories with the most problems were automobiles (21 percent) and electrical appliances (ten percent).

The greatest overall hazards from the products were injuries (25 percent), toxic chemicals (18 percent) and choking hazard if swallowed by children (twelve percent).

The priorities varied from country to country.

When it comes to warnings in Germany, vehicles came first (71 percent), followed by electrical appliances (five percent) and jewelry (four percent).

Online retailers commit themselves voluntarily

The commission assessed positively that more and more online retailers are voluntarily undertaking to improve the safety of the products on offer.

Eleven companies have made such a "product safety promise" so far, including the industry giants Amazon and eBay.

This week the providers Joom and Etsy were added.

The EU consumer association BEUC welcomed the report from the EU Commission.

It shows "that the national authorities must be vigilant at all times," said Director General Monique Goyens.

At the same time, there are probably many more cases that slip through the existing safety net.

EU law must be adapted quickly.

Corresponding plans by the EU Commission for this year are overdue.

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dab / dpa / AFP

Source: spiegel

All business articles on 2021-03-02

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