EUGLOREH project
THE STATUS OF HEALTH IN THE EUROPEAN UNION:
TOWARDS A HEALTHIER EUROPE

FULL REPORT

PART II - HEALTH CONDITIONS

7. ACCIDENTS AND INJURIES AND RELATED TIME TRENDS: PREVALENCE, INCIDENCE AND MORTALITY

7.4. Data discussion

7.4.5. Prevention of injuries caused by products and services

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7.4.5. Prevention of injuries caused by products and services

 

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 sportsdomain (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 obvious.

 

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.