Going back a few months a trader in the Campsie area of Sydney had several unapproved and non-compliant USB style chargers, power boards and travel adaptors removed from his stall by Fair Trading investigators following the death of a consumer who was thought to have used a non-compliant charger.
These types of devices are extremely dangerous and pose a serious risk of fire or electrocution. An individual selling these devices faces a maximum fine of $87,500 and/or a two years prison sentence and a corporation can expect a fine of up to $875,000.
Unapproved devices such as these are often made from inferior plastic and insulation materials and do not meet the requirements of the Australian Trading Standards. The devices removed from the trader’s stall had no approval marks or insulation on the pins. Sellers should not be passing these products on to consumers and it’s important that consumers should avoid these products.
If the USB charger that you’ve been using to charge your tablet or phone is lacking a safety approval mark or not insulated then you should bend the pins and dispose of the charger immediately. We’d also recommend for your safety that you never use a device while it is plugged in or charging.
The advice we give is that a person should never buy an electrical product which doesn’t have insulation on the pins of the plug and is without a safety approval stamp even if you think that you’re getting yourself a bargain. It really could be the difference between life or death!
How to check if an item is approved
All electrical goods that are approved will have a clearly marked safety symbol. This often includes a capital letter followed by a certificate number. You may find that some smaller electrical products have a trade name which acts as an approval mark.
Electricity is one of the things that we’d struggle to live without but it’s also one of the most dangerous things to take chances with. If you need any electrical work carried out then you should always call in the professionals. Call us on 07 3359 7527 and we’ll send an electrician straight to you no matter how small the job.