Brussels, 9 February 2004
Dangerous products in the spotlight: Commission to publish weekly reports on safety alerts
The European Commission is to start publishing weekly summaries of the alerts it receives from Member States about dangerous non-food consumer products. The first of these is available on the Commission's Consumer Affairs website at
The Commission typically receives between 2 and 4 safety alerts each week via an EU-wide rapid alert system known as RAPEX. The dangers presented often include risks of choking and suffocation, electric shocks and fires. The type of products most often notified in these alerts are toys, followed by electrical appliances. The RAPEX system was recently strengthened by the coming into force on 15 January of the new revised General Product Safety Directive which introduced new obligations for businesses to alert the authorities to dangerous products (see IP/04/53). The EU has a separate rapid alert system on food and feed safety (RASFF), which also makes available weekly summaries of alerts (see IP/03/750).
David Byrne, EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Protection said: "For me one of the most important objectives of consumer protection policy is to protect consumers, of all ages, against shoddy, unsafe products. Providing information to the public about product hazards is essential to achieve this objective. Clear information, active market surveillance and rapid intervention to remove dangerous products from the market: these are they key elements needed to provide European citizens with the protection level they require."
As well as the weekly reports, the Commission will be publishing quarterly statistics about RAPEX notifications. These too will be available on the Commission's Consumer Affairs website.
For more information about the RAPEX system and EU product safety rules see:
For general information about EU consumer policy see: