09 Nov

Anchor furniture and large TV’s to stop deaths and injuries

The ACCC is co-leading an international safety campaign urging parents and carers to anchor unstable furniture and large TVs to the wall to prevent infant deaths and serious injuries.

The consumer watchdog is joining the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and 18 other regulators from around the world in alerting consumers to the dangers of unstable furniture and large TVs.

Suppliers are also being urged to take immediate steps to improve the stability of these products and supply anchors at the point of sale.

Buying tips

  • Purchase low-set furniture or furniture with sturdy, stable and broad bases.
  • Look for furniture that comes with safety information or equipment for anchoring it to the walls.
  • Test the furniture in the shop – make sure it is stable. For example, pull out the top drawers and apply a little pressure to see how stable it is; make sure the drawers do not fall out easily.

Safety tips

  • Attach, mount, bolt or otherwise secure furniture to walls and floors.
  • Do not put heavy items on top shelves of bookcases.
  • Discourage small children from climbing on furniture.
  • Do not put tempting items such as favourite toys on top of furniture that encourage children to climb up and reach.
  • Do not place unstable furniture near where children play.
  • Put locking devices on all drawers and doors to prevent children opening them and using them as steps.

To read full article visit the ACCC website

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29 Aug

Whitegoods – Ozone Depleting Gases, tips for importers and retailers

….. “Whitegoods importers and retailers must be vigilant about sourcing pre-charged (gassed) whitegoods to ensure Australia’s regulation standards are maintained. Not all whitegoods coming from overseas meet Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956, specifically Schedule 10. While overseas suppliers offer the goods for sale, it doesn’t mean they meet standards in Australia. The responsibility is on the Australian buyer or importer to source responsibly. For large quantities of whitegoods, obtain the required permit from the Department of Environment and Energy. For small quantities exempt from permits, know your limits on quantity and gases permitted.”

Read the full article in Appliance Retailer for August 2017.

Details of Ozone Depleting Substance/Synthetic Greeenhouse Gas Equipment Licences (EQPL) and requirements are available on the Department of Environment and Energy website.

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24 Jul

2G Networks are switching off.

Optus will start switching off its 2G mobile network from April 2017 and  Vodafone’s 2G network will turn off in September 2017. Telstra already shut down its 2G mobile network at the end of 2016.

The Optus 2G network in WA and NT will switch off on 3 April 2017 and in SA, QLD, VIC, NSW, TAS and ACT it will switch off on 1 August 2017.

Most 2G customers will need to either upgrade their SIM or handset to continue to receive service. Contact your service provider to find out what your options are.

For further information see the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association website.

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24 Jul

Household Air Conditioners – Registration and Certification Requirements

There has been a change to the regulatory requirements of air conditioning units in Queensland. These units are “in-scope” equipment and primarily designed for use in residential homes.

1. At 29 January 2017, air conditioning units that incorporate flammable refrigerants were classified as risk Level 3 under the Electrical Equipment Safety System (EESS).

2. Responsible suppliers of this equipment must now be registered on the EESS database and register the equipment using a Certificate of Conformity.

Additionally, the units are required to be marked with the Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM).

Note: these changes only apply to units manufactured/imported into Australia after 29 January 2017. Those units manufactured or imported prior to this date, that comply with the relevant standard, and have already been sold by a registered responsible supplier to a third party to on-sell, may continue to be on-sold until the supply is exhausted.

3. Air conditioners that use non-flammable or low flammable refrigerants are currently Level 1. They will become Level 2 on 1 June 2018.
For more information visit the ERAC website

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23 Jul

Powerboard Safety ….. incorrect use can lead to house and office fires.

Power board safety

Problems with power boards can arise from:

  • Overloading the power board.
  • Dust build up in unused points.
  • Power leads becoming dislodged over time, particularly under a desk.
  • Poor placement of power cables and extension chords leading to the power board.
  • Inadequate ventilation of the power board preventing dissipation of heat generation.
  • Heavy plug-in transformers that can “over balance” and partially unplug can result in over-heating from poor connections.


  • Only using power boards with built in safety switches or circuit breakers.
  • Do not overload the power board.
  • Regularly check that all plugs are firmly fixed in power boards.
  • Ensure adequate ventilation is provided for power boards.
  • Regularly inspect power boards and leads for signs of damage and degradation.
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07 Jun

Is your Electric Heater safe to use this winter?

Some simple safety tips:-

  • Never operate a heater you suspect is damaged. Before use, inspect the heater, cord, and plug for damage.
  • Clean all surfaces of dust before use.
  • Never leave the heater operating while unattended, or while you are sleeping.
  • Keep combustible material such as beds, sofas, curtains, papers, and clothes at least 3 feet (0.9 m) from the front, sides, and rear of the heater.
  • Never cover the heater while in use.
  • Be sure the heater plug fits tightly into the wall outlet.
  • During use, check frequently to determine if the heater plug or cord, wall outlet, or faceplate is HOT! If the plug, outlet, or faceplate is hot, discontinue use of the heater, and have a qualified electrician check and/or replace the plug or faulty wall outlet(s). If the cord is hot, disconnect the heater, and have it inspected/repaired by an authorized repair person
  • Never power the heater with an extension cord or power strip.
  • Ensure that the heater is placed on a stable, level surface, and located where it will not be knocked over.
  • Never run the heater’s cord under rugs or carpeting. This can damage the cord, causing it and nearby objects to burn.
  • To prevent electrical shocks and electrocutions, always keep electric heaters away from water, and NEVER touch an electric heater if you are wet.
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07 Jun

Winter is here ! – have you checked your electric blanket for safety?

With the arrival of cooler nights, the electric blankets come out of the closet. Do you know if your electric blanket is still safe to use?

Is your blanket  more than 10 years old?

If so, best to replace it as over time the electrical components and wires will wear even if the cover looks good.

Is it a washable electric blanket?

If so please read the instructions carefully and make sure the blanket is fully dry before placing it on your bed and turning it on.

Before placing the blanket on your bed.

Turn the blanket on to ensure that it is in good working order. Check the wires for kinking and wear.

Do not sleep with the blanket on.

Children especially are prone to overheating if the blanket is left on overnight.

Are you using your electric blanket underneath an underlay/underblanket or mattress protector?

If so, check that the instructions allow this. Unless otherwise stated, all electric blankets should sit on top of underlays/mattress protectors. The undersurface of underlays/mattress protectors are not designed to take intense heat especially if they have a waterproof coating.

Check the Recalls website to see if there have been any recalls of electric blankets.

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10 Mar
24 Feb

Changes to Risk Level of Electrical Equipment. AS/NZS 4417.2 – Amendments 2 & 3

On 29 January 2016, Amendment 2 of AS/NZS 4417.2 was published with a 12 month implementation date from the date of publication. Amendment 2 changed the risk classification and certification requirements of specific types of equipment. On 16 February 2017 Amendment 3 to AS/NZS 4417.2 delayed Level 2 equipment implementation to 1 June 2018.

A summary of the changes, include:

  • Air Conditioners Incorporating Flammable Refrigerant have been increased to level 3.
  • Air Conditioners Incorporating Non-Flammable or Low Flammable Refrigerant remain level 1 until 1 June 2018, after which date they become level 2.
  • Building Wiring Cables have been increased to level 3.
  • Double Capped Light Emitting Semiconductor Lamps (LED Tubes) have been increased to level 3.
  • Luminaire – Portable Type definition remains unchanged until 1 June 2018. Any portable luminaire within this definition will remains Level 3 until that date.
  • Simple Portable Luminaire is a new definition and on 1 June 2018 equipment within that definition will be classified as Level 2. Until 1 June 2018 the previous definition of Luminaire portable type applies to any simple portable luminaire that fits within that existing definition.
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01 Feb

New Acoustic Safety requirements in Australia starting from 1 March 2017

New Acoustic Safety requirements in Australia starting from 01 March 2017

The Australian standard AS/CA S042.1: 2015 requires telecommunication devices to comply with acoustic safety requirement as specified in clause 5.5.1. The Maximum Sound Pressure Level (SPL) measured at the Ear Reference Point (ERP) shall be less or equal to 120 dBA.

It is a mandatory requirement and the test procedure for this test is described in clause 6.3 of AS/CA S042.1: 2015 (standard attached).

This test method is very similar to the test method of SPL measurement described in the standard AS/CA S004: 2013 for devices connected to the PSTN/ISDN Network.

Under older version of the Telecommunication Labelling Notice TLN 2001 (Schedule 1 Note 27), a compliance level 1 applies to the maximum sound pressure level requirement of S042.1. This means that a manufacturer’s declaration that the device is in compliance with acoustic safety requirement of AS/CA S042.1: 2015 and has SPL level less than 120 dBA was acceptable.

However, in the new TLN 2015, the note 27 was removed and AS/CA S042.1: 2015 was defined as a high risk standard, which means that only accredited test labs or Australian ACMA certification bodies can issue a AS/CA S042.1: 2015 test report.

The existing version of TLN 2001 will expire at the end of February 2017 (2 years grandfathering period). From 01 March 2017, for demonstrating compliance with SPL requirement we will require a report and test data prepared under test procedure as describe in AS/CA S042.1: 2015. Previously provided reports to EN 50332-1 & 2 will not be sufficient for approval of mobile phones.

Currently, as there is no accredited lab to AS/CA S042.1: 2015 we will not require acoustic safety reports from accredited lab and will accept any test reports provided under test procedure described in clause 6.3 of AS/CA S042.1: 2015 supplied together with a manufacturer’s declaration statement.

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