7.4.5. Prevention of injuries caused by products and
Ensuring high standards of consumer safety in is one
prerequisite of the single market. The safety of non-food consumer products is
ensured by a wide range of sectoral legislation and complemented by the General
Product Safety Directive(European
Parliament and the Council, 2001).
Nevertheless, accidents involving non-food products and/or
consumer services (i.e. tourism services, sports and leisure services) are
numerous. Given the fact that the majority of injuries occur in the “home,
leisure and sports” domain (Table 7.1) and that in most home, leisure and
sports accidents some kind of “product” is involved (Figure 7.23), the
importance of consumer safety to become involved in injury protection is
Figure 7.23: Category of products
involved in home and leisure accidents, selected EUGLOREH countries
Analyses of product or service related injuries provide
the opportunity for improving the design of products, buildings and vehicles,
for guiding consumer information, legislation and law enforcement. To
facilitate this, it is essential to have injury monitoring and reporting
systems which identify the nature of the injury, the nature of the product
and/or service and the circumstances of the injury. In the EU injury Data Base,
(IDB) products involved in the accident and the injury are identified and can
provide at least a broad evidence base for consumer protection in the area of
safety of products and services.
This information can then be used by regulators and
product developers to ensure continuous improvements in safety and reduction of
injuries Community-wide (European Commission, 2006).
Valuable information for policy makers on the safety of
products and services can be found at the web portals of the European Consumers
Association (BEUC, www.beuc.org), the
European Association of Consumer Representatives in Standardization (ANEC) www.anec.org, and the Product Safety
Enforcement Forum (PROSAFE) www.prosafe.org.