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Trading Standards Reminds Forwarders of Product Safety Liabilities

BIFA works with Trading Standards on a variety of initiatives including speeding up the process to clear goods that have been held due to product safety concerns. This article references to the importing of toy products to the UK.

This guidance has become increasingly important due to the amount of products manufactured overseas and imported into the UK.

There is scarcely a year when there is not a product recall on toys. Many Members will recall the issues with faulty lithium batteries in e-scooters self-igniting. Literally thousands of these items were seized at the time of customs entry.

Most Members will be familiar with the work of the main Government Departments; however certain frontier activities remain the responsibility of local Government – for instance Port Health.  

Trading Standards have been increasingly active liaising with HMRC and other departments to monitor the number of products which breach product safety legislation. For the freight forwarder/customs agent, the most visible and frequent manifestation of their intervention is when CHIEF allocates a Route 1S routing to the consignment. 

Trading Standards believe that bringing the compliance related matters to the attention of importers is one way of improving the situation.

Therefore BIFA would like Members to download and distribute the attached posters:

BIFA Members should be aware that where they import goods on DDP terms and there is no importer of record established in the UK they assume certain legal responsibilities with regards to product safety. 

For instance, where the Member delivers goods directly to the consumer (end user) they could be regarded as the distributor and if a fault is found with the product then the freight forwarder, they would be the party responsible for recalling the product.

Trading Standards will be targeting other types of goods where there are specific concerns relative to product safety, so please keep checking back here for future updates.


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