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Free BSIF guides identify fake and illegal products

23 January 2013

As part of the fight against fake and illegal personal protective equipment (PPE), the British Safety Industry Federation (BSIF), the UK's leading trade body for the safety industry, is building on its resources to help end-users and enforcement agencies to identify illegal products and ensure workers are protected.

All PPE must be independently tested to appropriate CE standards and hold a CE certificate to prove the products comply with its requirements. In response to a growing number of reported cases of counterfeit CE compliance certificates, the BSIF has launched a new CE Certificate Checklist to make it easier to identify counterfeit and illegal certificates. If the PPE buyer is concerned about the performance or status of a product, they should ask to see the CE Certificate relating to the PPE they are buying. The leaflet offers advice on how to spot an illegal or incorrect CE certificate. This simple checklist will highlight any inconsistencies that can be raised immediately with the supplier and clarification sought.

Counterfeit PPE is on the increase, with well established product brands and designs being targeted. The consequences of using counterfeit and illegal products could be fatal. Often these products don't perform as they should, endangering lives and exposing businesses to the risk of prosecution. The BSIF's PPE Checklist aims to be an easy way to ensure that products are legal, compliant and safe to use, offering clear guidance on how to spot counterfeit or illegal PPE products.

In the campaign against counterfeit and illegal products, the BSIF has established the Registered Safety Supplier Scheme to signpost PPE users to reliable suppliers. Companies displaying the RSSS shield have signed up to a binding declaration that the safety equipment they offer meets the appropriate product performance standards, is fully compliant with the PPE Directive and carries legal CE marks and certification. This declaration is independently audited to confirm their conformity. The Scheme is now being specified in some major tendering processes.

The new guidance leaflets and checklists are available to download free from the RSSS section of the BSIF's website www.bsif.co.uk, which contains all the relevant information about the Scheme and the importance of using compliant products.