046 HPM 0517

HPM May 2017

46 BATHROOMS & SHOWERS ‘Designing for compliance’ Ensuring product safety should be the cornerstone of any research and development strategy, according to Croydex product and procurement director, Peter Pegden Although Croydex has been designing and manufacturing bathroom accessories for nearly 100 years, we know there is no quick fix when you are committed to safety, quality and reliability. Good product design that proactively meets all the necessary regulations and standards not only protects consumers’ safety, but also makes good business sense. For professional installers, who are important sources of trusted help and advice to the consumers, peace of mind that the products they use are safe and fit for purpose is crucial. We ‘design for compliance’ with risk assessments an integral part of our product development and procurement process along with in-depth customer research and thorough testing. Regular inspections Directly employed Quality Assurance teams carry out regular inspections to ensure that every bathroom accessory supplied to our customers meets the very highest of standards. For example, all our bath and shower mats are fitted with secure grip suction cups and are rigorously tested to ensure that they meet the performance requirements for slipresistance mats in the British Standard. The Bathroom Manufacturers’ Association (BMA) recently highlighted the issue of unscrupulous product manufacturers flouting strict EU regulations concerning ‘fitness for purpose’ and the subsequent adverse effect on the industry. As active BMA members, we fully support its concerns regarding those who contravene EU or indeed any other legislation designed to keep consumers safe. Croydex is fully committed to product safety, and we continuously monitor changes to legislation and harmonised standards, as well as other relevant standards, industry, technological and safety developments. We believe legislation is clear, well-defined and straightforward to follow. The General Product Safety Regulations 2005 (GPSR) came into force at the beginning of October 2005 and transposed the General Product Safety Directive 2001/95/EC into UK law. These apply to all products where there is no relevant specific product legislation. When products are already subject to other existing regulations, then these will apply. Some parts of the GPSR will, however, apply where they go further than the existing regulations in terms of the specific aspects of safety covered and the extent of the obligations on producers. The implications of purchasing or supplying products that are unsafe can be serious or even fatal. Many consumer protection laws include 'strict liability' offences where it does not matter that the person accused did not intend to break the law. In such cases, it may be possible for a producer or distributor to argue it took all reasonable steps and exercised all due diligence to avoid committing the alleged offence. This is known as a ‘due diligence’ defence but to use this a person must prove that they took all reasonable precautions and exercised all due diligence to avoid an offence being committed. There is a hierarchy for assessing product safety set down in the legislation that producers and distributors must follow to ensure they applied due diligence, for example, all reasonable steps to ensure that their products are safe have been taken. Where a product conforms to a harmonised European standard then the product is presumed to be a safe product so far as concerns the risks and categories of risk covered by the harmonised European standard. Codes of good practice Where there are no harmonised European standards to give a presumption of conformity for a product, then the safety of that product should be should be assessed using: Voluntary European standards or standards drawn up in the UK; industry codes of good practice; the state of the art and technology; and reasonable consumer expectations concerning safety. By embedding our commitment to compliance within our product design and development process, installers and their customers can be confident that the Croydex range of bathroom accessories are safe, high quality and fit for purpose. Croydex has Quality Assurance teams to carry out regular inspections to ensure every bathroom accessory supplied to customers meets the highest of standards www.hpmmag.com May 2017 enquiry number 127 “For professional installers, who are important sources of trusted help and advice to the consumers, peace of mind that the products they use are safe and fit for purpose is crucial”


HPM May 2017
To see the actual publication please follow the link above