ACCC warns businesses to prepare for mandatory product safety reporting

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has warned businesses to begin preparing for new mandatory product safety reporting requirements that are scheduled to take effect next year.

From 1 January, businesses will be required to notify the ACCC when they have supplied a product that has caused serious injury, illness or death.

ACCC deputy chair Peter Kell has said the mandatory reporting requirements would mean businesses would need to put in processes to track and take action on consumer complaints promptly.

"The reporting requirement was introduced to enable potential product safety hazards to be identified more readily, enabling a more rapid and targeted response to emerging safety issues,” he said.

Suppliers will have to notify the ACCC within two days of learning that a consumer good or product related service they have supplied has caused, or may cause, serious injury, illness or death.

The ACCC will hold forums for suppliers about the new requirements later this year.

The ACCC has also issued draft guidelines on the new requirements. The ACCC have encouraged comments from suppliers.

Information on the mandatory reporting requirements is available at: www.productsafety.gov.au/mandatoryreporting.

Business can also keep up-to-date on developments via Twitter: @ProductSafetyAU.

The reporting reform is one of a number implemented over the past year to improve Australia’s product safety system following a 2006 Productivity Commission review. 

The review noted suppliers often had access to more information about their products than government, and that government’s ability to respond to existing and emerging hazards could be improved with greater, and faster, access to relevant product safety information.  The mandatory reporting requirement was recommended to address this issue.

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