Product safety law
Product safety regulations
All consumer products are covered by the General Safety Products Regulations (GSPR). However, many types of product are covered by specific safety laws. Where there is crossover, specific laws normally take precedence.
The following categories are subject to regulations that enforce EU directives:
- Aerosols are regulated by the Aerosol Dispensers Regulations 2009.
- ATEX is covered by the Equipment and Protective Systems Intended for Use in Potentially Explosive Atmospheres Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2017.
- Cosmetics are regulated by the Cosmetic Products Enforcement Regulations 2013 and the EU Cosmetics Regulations 2009.
- Children's products, including toys, nightwear and dummies, are covered by a number of regulations - see safety regulations for children's products.
- Electrical and electronic products are covered by a number of regulations. See safety regulations for electrical and electronic products.
- Fireworks must meet certain legal requirements. See safety regulations for firework manufacturers and importers.
- Food imitations, products that look like or imitate food but are not food, are covered by the Food Imitations (Safety) Regulations 1989.
- Furniture is regulated by the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988.
- Gas appliances are covered by the Gas Appliances (Enforcement) and Miscellaneous Amendments Regulations 2018 as well as the Gas Appliances Regulation 2016/426/EU.
- Machinery is covered by the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008.
- Oil heaters are covered by the Oil Heaters (Safety) Regulations 1977.
- Outdoor equipment is affected by Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008 and the Noise Emission in the Environment by Equipment for use Outdoors Regulations 2001.
- Personal protective equipment is regulated by the Personal Protective Equipment (Enforcement) Regulations 2018 as well as the Personal Protective Equipment Regulation 2016/425/EU.
- Pressure equipment is covered by two laws - the Pressure Equipment (Safety) Regulations 2016 and the Simple Pressure Vessels (Safety) Regulations 2016.
- Recreational craft is covered by the Recreational Craft Regulations 2017.
A CE mark is a manufacturer's claim that its product meets specified essential safety requirements set out in relevant European directives. CE marking is mandatory for many types of products, such as electronics, toys and machinery. See products that need CE marking.
See our guide on CE Marking.
Important: If the United Kingdom leaves the European Union without a withdrawal deal, the requirements for placing certain products on the UK and EU markets will change. The new UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) mark will replace CE marking for certain products being sold in the UK and the EU will no longer recognise CE marking certification issued by UK-based assessment bodies.
Read the latest UK government guidance on using the CE marking and the new UKCA marking after Brexit.
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