GUIDANCE NOTES ON THE UK TOYS
(SAFETY) REGULATIONS 1995
This document provides a guide to the Toys (Safety) Regulations 1995.
It is for guidance only and in no way replaces the Regulations. The
guide has no legal force but is intended to help business, enforcement
authorities and consumers understand the main features of the
legislation, and the circumstances in which it applies. Those affected
by the Regulations should refer to them for a full statement of the legal
requirements and in case of doubt seek advice on questions of
The Regulations are administered under the provisions of the Consumer
Protection Act 1987 and those affected by the Regulations may also
find it useful to familiarise themselves with aspects of that Act.
The Regulations (Statutory Instrument 1995 No 204) and the
Consumer Protection Act 1987 can be obtained from: the Stationery
Office Ltd, SO Publications Centre, PO Box 276, London SW8 5DT;
through SO bookshops; or from official agents for SO publications.
Toy Safety - the law in brief 5
Free movement of goods 6
Free circulation 6
The Toys (Safety) Regulations 1995
The requirements in detail 7
Suppliers affected 8
The person who first places a toy on the market 9
Other suppliers 9
• The essential safety requirements 9
• CE marking 10
• Restrictions on the use of CE marking 11
• Warnings, name and address details and other information 11
which must accompany toys
• Information to be kept available 12
• Compliance notices 13
Relevant national standards 13
Approved Bodies 14
Safeguard procedure 14
Barriers to trade 15
Enforcement of the Regulations 15
Offences, proceedings, due diligence defence and penalties 15
The Home Authority Principle 17
Further information 18
Annex A: Definitions 19
Annex B: Products not regarded as toys 24
Annex C: Essential safety requirements for toys 25
Annex D: Satisfying the essential safety requirements 30
Annex E: Warnings, name and address details and other
safety information which must accompany toys 32
Annex F: Information to be kept available 34
Annex G: Compliance Notices 35
Annex H: Historical Background 36
Annex I: Note on the Consumer Protection Act 1987 (The 1987 Act) 37
While every effort has been made to ensure that the information in this
booklet is accurate, the Department of Trade and Industry cannot accept
liability for any errors, omissions or misleading statements in that
Toy Safety - the law in brief
Since 1 January 1990, UK Regulations which implement the European Directive
on the safety of toys have been in force.
! The main requirements are that toys must:
" satisfy safety requirements (termed the ‘essential safety
" bear the CE marking;
" bear the required name and address details;
" be accompanied by warnings where necessary.
! In addition, information must be maintained for inspection by enforcement
Second-hand toys must be safe but are not subject to the other requirements in
The Regulations apply to manufacturers, importers, retailers, hirers and other
suppliers of new and second-hand toys - that is, anyone supplying toys in the
course of any business. Toys distributed free of charge in the course of business
are also covered.
! Supplying toys which are subject to the Regulations but do not meet their
requirements would constitute an offence and could result in penalties of a
fine of up to £5,000 or a term of imprisonment, or both.
! The same safety requirements apply everywhere in the Community, so safe
toys complying with the UK Regulations, and any other applicable Community
requirements, may be sold anywhere in the Community.
! The essential safety requirements in the Regulations are intended to provide
a comprehensive framework for ensuring that toys are safe. In order to comply
with the essential safety requirements it will be necessary for some toys also
to comply with other legislation - e.g. toys that are cosmetics must also comply
with the Cosmetic Products (Safety) Regulations 1996 (as amended).
! The Regulations do not apply to some products (e.g. toy steam engines)
which might otherwise be regarded as toys but are specifically excluded
from the definition of toy in the Regulations. (Note that such products are
covered by the General Product Safety Regulations 1994 and may be subject
to other requirements.)
Free movement of goods
Achieving the free movement of goods lies at the heart of the drive to create the
single European market.
All European Community countries have laws on product safety and so on. Different
laws can cause technical barriers to trade.
In May 1985, European Community Ministers agreed on a ‘New Approach to
Technical Harmonisation and Standards’ to tackle this long-standing problem for
‘New Approach’ directives set out ‘essential requirements’ (for safety, for example),
written in general terms, which must be met before products may be sold in the
United Kingdom or anywhere else in the Community. European standards fill in
the detail and are the main way for businesses to meet the ‘essential requirements’.
The Directives also say how manufacturers are to show that products meet the
‘essential requirements’. Products meeting the requirements are to carry CE
marking, which should mean that they can be sold anywhere in the Community.
The Toys Safety Directive is one such directive. The provisions of the Directive
were implemented into United Kingdom law by the Toys (Safety) Regulations 1989,
which came into force on 1 January 1990. These Regulations have been revoked
and replaced by the Toys (Safety) Regulations 1995. The rest of this booklet
describes those Regulations.
For the wider background and to find out more about what this means for your
business, get your copy of Keeping your product on the market by telephoning
DTI’s Publications Orderline on 0870 1502 500.
Under European Community rules (as set out in the Toys Safety Directive and
other New Approach directives) Community countries are required not to interfere
with the supply of toys that carry CE marking and satisfy the required safety and
other provisions. Thus, toys bearing the CE marking are to be presumed to satisfy
the provisions of the Directive, and other New Approach directives as applicable,
unless there are grounds for suspecting otherwise.
The Toys (Safety) Regulations 1995
(SI 1995 No 204)
Entry into force: 24 February 1995. The 1995 Regulations (“the Regulations”),
which were made under the Consumer Protection Act 1987, contain provisions
which were introduced in 1990. The following paragraphs set out the position as
at 1 January 1997 following the expiry of the transitional period provided for in the
Regulations. The background to the Regulations is set out in Annex H.
THE REQUIREMENTS IN DETAIL
The Regulations require that:
(a) toys must satisfy the essential safety requirements (regulation 4) - see
also pages 9 -10;
(b) toys or their packaging must bear the CE marking as a positive
declaration by the manufacturer or his authorised representative that:
(i) the toys satisfy the essential safety requirements of the Toys Safety
Directive (regulations 10(2)(a) and 10(2)(b)) - see also pages 9 -10;
(ii) compliance has been verified by the use of the appropriate
attestation (i.e. test/assessment) procedures and that these have
been correctly applied by the person entitled to do so (see page 10);
(iii) the toys satisfy all the requirements of all New Approach directives
(see section 10 of Annex A) which are applicable to the toys
(regulations 5(2) and 5(3)) - see also pages 9 -10;
(c) toys must be accompanied by the name and address of the person in
the community who takes responsibility for the safety of the toy and,
where appropriate, warnings and instructions for use (regulations 10(1)
and 10(8)) - see also pages 11 -12;
(d) information, including details supporting the declaration that the toys
satisfy the essential safety requirements and the requirements of all
other New Approach directives which have been applied to the toys,
must be kept available for inspection by enforcement authorities
(regulations 11(1) and 11 (2)) - see also pages 12 -13;
(e) the style and form of the CE marking must be as specified in detail
(regulation 3(1) and Schedule 1) see also page 10.
Sub-paragraph (b)(iii), among other things, also signifies a declaration
that the appropriate information is held in the Community and is available
for inspection, if necessary, by enforcement authorities.
Primary legislation: the Regulations were made under the 1987 Act and the
European Communities Act 1972. The various enforcement powers, penalties,
appeals, defences, compensation provisions referred to in this guide, and other
relevant provisions, are those set out in various sections of Parts II and IV of the
1987 Act (see also pages 15 - 17 and Annex I).
The Regulations apply to toys, defined as:
“any product or material designed or clearly intended for use in
play by children of less than 14 years of age” (regulation 3(1)) - see
below and section 5 of Annex A.
See Annex B for products not regarded as toys for the purpose of the
The Regulations do not apply to:
! the products listed in Annex B (such items are subject to the General
Product Safety Regulations 1994 (see section 6 of Annex A) and, in
some cases, legislation implementing specific EC directives and other
! toys which are not intended to be used in the UK or elsewhere in the
Community (regulation 2(2)).
Second-hand toys have been subject to safety regulations since 1967 and this
has been continued in all subsequent Regulations. Such toys must satisfy the
safety provisions of the Regulations but are not subject to CE marking and name
and address requirements, or the need for information to be maintained (regulation
The Regulations apply to all those who supply toys in the UK - manufacturers,
importers, wholesalers, retailers and hirers. ‘Supply’ (regulation 3(1)) includes
offering to supply, agreeing to supply, exposing for supply and possessing for
supply in the course of any business, not only a business dealing in toys.
Many charities will be subject to the Regulations because they will have the
characteristics of what would be regarded as a business - money generating, a
degree of continuity and regular business hours would be examples of such
characteristics. Persons organising jumble sales and bazaars which are held at
infrequent and irregular intervals would be unlikely to be considered as acting in
the course of business - but traders who might be invited to sell toys at such a
function would not be exempt from the requirements. In cases of doubt independent
legal advice should be sought.
Individuals producing toys on an occasional basis to give to charities to sell would
not themselves be subject to the Regulations but the charity which sold such toys
might come within the scope of the Regulations.
The person who first places a toy on the market
The manufacturer or his authorised representative in the Community (for definition
see Annex A, sections 8 and 1 respectively), supplying in the UK, must ensure
that toys satisfy the requirements as set out on page 7 and must take responsibility
for the declaration which the CE marking represents (regulations 10(1) and 10(2))
(see page 15 on offences).
Where neither the manufacturer nor his authorised representative is established
in the Community (see section 4 of Annex A) the importer who imports toys from
a country outside the Community - who then becomes the first supplier into the
Community - (see section 7 of Annex A) must ensure that the above conditions
are satisfied (regulation 10(1)) (see page 15 on offences).
Other persons in the supply chain - e.g. importers who import toys from another
member State, wholesalers, retailers - must supply only safe toys (regulation 13)
which bear the CE marking and other specified details (see page 15 on offences).
THE ESSENTIAL SAFETY REQUIREMENTS
The essential safety requirements are set out in Annex C. They state that the user
of toys, as well as anyone else, must be protected against risks of injury and to
health when toys are used reasonably, bearing in mind the normal behaviour of
There are two methods by which a manufacturer or his authorised representative
can ensure that toys satisfy the essential safety requirements applicable to them
(regulations 6 and 7). These are:
! manufacture in conformity with the relevant national standards where
these cover all relevant aspects of the safety of the toy (see method 1,
Annex D) and self-certification that this is the case;
! manufacture in accordance with a model which has been EC typeexamined
(see method 2, Annex D).
Given the number and scope of relevant national standards available,
method 1 will be the most commonly used procedure. Although it is
open to manufacturers or their authorised representative to apply for
EC type-examinations this procedure will only be legally required in
certain cases - e.g. where some safety aspect of a toy is not addressed
by the standards.
The essential safety requirements are intended to cover all aspects of the safety
of toys. This can be deduced from Article 2 of the Directive and the general
principles of the essential safety requirements (see Part 1 of Annex C). However,
in order to satisfy the broad principles of the essential safety requirements some
toys covered by the Regulations will also need to comply with other legislation
implementing European requirements such as the Dangerous Substances and
Preparations (Safety) Regulations 1980 (as amended); the Food Imitations (Safety)
Regulations 1989; and the Cosmetic Products (Safety) Regulations 1996 (as
amended). They will also need to comply with the Euratom Directive (see page
It follows that toys which come within the scope of the Regulations are not subject
to the General Product Safety Regulations 1994. Therefore, where enforcement
action is necessary this can only be taken on the basis of not satisfying one or
more of the requirements of the toy safety Regulations.
Toys must bear, or be accompanied by, the CE marking in a visible, easily legible
and indelible form. It may be on the toys themselves or their packaging (regulation
10(1)) - but see also page 12. Affixing the CE marking represents a declaration,
which only the manufacturer or his authorised representative in the Community
can make, and results in a presumption - which is rebuttable - that the requirements
of the Regulations (see page 7) have been complied with.
Affixing CE marking, and responsibility for the declaration which it
represents, is the responsibility of the manufacturer or his authorised
representative and this responsibility cannot be devolved to the test
laboratory which may have been employed to undertake tests or
otherwise assesses the safety of the toy in question.
In addition, CE marking will also constitute a declaration of conformity with other
New Approach directives where they apply. In the UK this will mean complying
with the relevant UK regulations implementing those directives (see page 9). An
example of such regulations are the Electromagnetic Compatibility Regulations
1992 (which implement the Electromagnetic Compatibility Directive).
The Regulations formalise the style and size of the CE marking (regulation 3(1)).
This is as shown in diagram 1 below. The marking may not be smaller than 5mm
in height and the proportions shown in diagram 2 below must be maintained
whatever its size.
Note: the grid does not form part of the marking and is for information only.
Diagram 1 Diagram 2
The CE marking is not a European safety mark or quality symbol
intended for consumers and should not be presented as such. Its
purpose is to indicate to enforcement authorities that the toys
bearing it are intended for sale in the European Community and
signifies a declaration by the manufacturer or his authorised
representative in the Community that the toys satisfy the
requirements applicable to them and are entitled to access to
Community markets (see page 6 on ‘free circulation’ and page 15
on ‘barriers to trade’).
RESTRICTIONS ON THE USE OF CE MARKING
It should be noted that the CE marking is specific only to a range of directives,
termed ‘New Approach’ directives (see section 10 of Annex A). It can only be
applied to products covered by those directives and on the basis of the conditions
contained in them. Where a product is not a toy for the purpose of the Regulations
(see page 5) it is not required to satisfy the essential safety requirements. In
cases where such products are not subject to specific EC directives, safety will be
regulated by the General Product Safety Regulations 1994 and will be assessed
taking into account any appropriate safety standards. In some instances the toy
safety standards may be considered a reasonable and practicable means for
assessing safety. Where such non-toy products satisfy the toy safety standards
they must not be CE marked (unless they are subject to another New Approach
directive and also satisfy its requirements).
While it is not an offence under the Regulations to affix the CE marking to items
which are not toys or covered by another directive requiring CE marking, such
action could constitute an offence under section 1 of the Trade Descriptions Act
1968 and could result in prosecution and subsequent fine. This can apply to any
person in the supply chain.
WARNINGS, NAME AND ADDRESS DETAILS AND OTHER INFORMATION
WHICH MUST ACCOMPANY TOYS
Some toys must also be accompanied by warnings and information on precautions
to be taken during use (regulation 10(8)). Details are given in Annex E. These
must be in English although they may, in addition, be in other languages (regulation
10(9)). Other Community countries may have their own language requirements.
Whilst it is not an offence under the Regulations to market a toy with a
warning in circumstances when the law does not require it (i.e. ‘not
suitable for children under 36 months’ on a bath toy) such unnecessary
statements should be avoided as they tend to dilute the effectiveness
of warnings which the Regulations do require.
The name or trade name or mark and the address of the person who takes
responsibility for the safety of the toy and compliance with other requirements of
the Regulations must also accompany the toys (regulation 10(1)). This information
must relate to one of the following:
(a) where the manufacturer is established in the Community and he
has no authorised representative so established - the details must
be those of the manufacturer;
(b) where the manufacturer is established in the Community and he
has an authorised representative also so established - the details
must be those of either the manufacturer or his authorised representative
so established (see the third and fourth paragraphs of section 1 of
(c) where the manufacturer is not established in the Community but
he has an authorised representative so established - the details
must be those of the authorised representative;
(d) where the manufacturer is not established in the Community and
he has no authorised representative so established - the details
must be those of the importer into the Community.
The name and address details are required to enable enforcement
authorities to take follow-up action in the event that a toy is thought to
be unsafe or to issue a compliance notice (see page 13).
Any abbreviation of the above details may only be made as long as the
manufacturer or authorised representative or importer, as appropriate, can be
identified. A company’s trade name or mark may appear with the full name and
address. However, the trade name or mark may only appear as an alternative to
the full name provided such trade name or mark enables the manufacturer or
authorised representative or importer to be identified by enforcement authorities
in the UK and elsewhere in the Community (regulation 10(1)).
In the case of small toys or toys made of small parts, the CE marking and name
and address details may appear on labels attached to the toys; on printed labels
or leaflets accompanying the toys; or on the container of toys which are not
individually packaged - i.e. on the retail display box (regulation 10(3)). However,
where warnings are required to be given they must be supplied with each toy
As with the CE marking, the name and address details must be in a visible, easily
legible and indelible form (regulation 10(1)). If these details are not on, or attached
to, the toys, the final customer must be advised to keep or make a note of them
INFORMATION TO BE KEPT AVAILABLE
The information (regulations 11(1) and 11(2)) set out in Annex F must be kept
available for inspection by enforcement authorities by:
(a) the manufacturer if he is established in the United Kingdom; or
(b) if the manufacturer is not established in the Community, by his
authorised representative if he is established in the United Kingdom;
(c) if the manufacturer is not established in the Community and he has no
authorised representative so established, by the importer into the
Community if he is established in the United Kingdom.
With reference to the above, the holder of the information may be
different to the person whose name and address details must appear
on the toys (see page 11 and section 1 of Annex A). However, in such
circumstances the latter person must be able to direct enforcement
authorities to the holder of the information when called upon to do so.
In addition to the responsibilities placed on suppliers, the Regulations also include
a provision whereby an enforcement authority may issue a compliance notice in
respect of a non-safety matter on the manufacturer or his authorised representative
established in the Community (regulation 10(11)) - see Annex G. Formal
enforcement action cannot be taken unless such a notice is first served.
The compliance notice provisions do not apply in the case of second-hand toys.
RELEVANT NATIONAL STANDARDS
The EN 71 series of European harmonised toy safety standards produced by
CEN has been transposed into the British Standard BS EN 71. These are the
‘relevant national standards’ for the purpose of the Regulations (regulations 3(1),
6 and 9(2)(c)). This term has a particular meaning and is explained in section 11
of Annex A.
Six parts to BS EN 71 have been published. They deal with mechanical and physical
properties, flammability requirements, migration of certain elements (i.e. permitted
levels of lead, cadmium, etc.), experimental sets for chemistry and related activities,
chemical toys other than experimental sets and a pictogram for age warning
labelling. The safety of electric toys is covered by BS EN 50088:1996.
It is clearly important that manufacturers design toys keeping the published relevant
national standards in mind rather than ignore them with consequent difficulties in
attempting to show that the toys are safe, (see page 9 and paragraph 5 of Annex
D). Details on the up-to-date position on standards may be obtained from the BSI
contact point given on page 18.
It is also recommended that manufacturers and importers undertake a hazard
assessment on toys at the prototype stage to decide whether there are any aspects
of safety that are outside the scope of the standards. This will help determine
whether a particular toy will require to be submitted to an approved body for EC
APPROVED BODIES (referred to as ‘notified bodies’ in other New Approach
In accordance with the provisions of the Toys Safety Directive, the Secretary of
State for Trade and Industry has authorised a number of UK test laboratories for
the purpose of undertaking EC type-examinations. These are test laboratories
which satisfy the criteria set out in Annex Ill of the Toys Safety Directive. These
test laboratories are authorised solely for the purpose of undertaking EC typeexaminations
for toys. Accordingly, such a body is not acting as an ‘approved
body’ when testing to the relevant national standards to support a self-certification
declaration by the manufacturer or his authorised representative as mentioned on
page 9 and explained in paragraphs 1 and 2 of Annex D.
Each appointment is notified to the European Commission and other member
States. Each body is assigned a unique identification number and details are
published in the Official Journal of the European Communities. Manufacturers or
their authorised representatives are free to make use of the services of an approved
body in any member State. Lists of approved bodies in the UK and other member
States are updated as necessary and copies may be obtained from the DTI contact
point given on page 18.
Member States are required, within their own jurisdiction to:
! remove from the market toys which do not satisfy the requirements as set
out in the Regulations; or,
! prevent non-complying toys from being placed on the market.
They must then notify the European Commission of the enforcement action when
the non-compliance relates to safety and the toy bears the CE marking. Where
the Commission is satisfied that the action is justified it is required to send details
of the case to other member States so that they can consider taking similar action
(this is the so-called ‘safeguard procedure’).
The DTI’s Consumer Safety Unit is responsible for notifying the Commission of
enforcement action taken in the UK based on information received from
enforcement authorities. Traders against whom enforcement action has been taken
should therefore ensure that the trading standards officers concerned have the
fullest information including any statements they wish to make about the case.
Such information dispatched from the UK is treated as commercially confidential
and clearly marked as being for enforcement purposes only.
The safeguard procedure does not apply in the case of toys which do not bear the
CE marking or toys which are second-hand.
The Rapid Exchange of Information System (RAPEX) provides a system for
notifying the Commission and thence member States about consumer products
which are considered to pose a ‘serious and immediate risk’ to the health and
safety of consumers. This system operates in addition to the safeguard clause
procedure described above. The DTI’s Consumer Safety Unit is the UK national
contact point for both incoming and outgoing RAPEX notifications.
BARRIERS TO TRADE
Where a supplier believes that his toys satisfy all the requirements of the
Regulations - and therefore the Directive - but are being denied access to the
market in another member State he may seek advice and assistance from DTI’s
Action Single Market Unit on 020 7215 4212 or Fax 020 7215 4489.
ENFORCEMENT OF THE REGULATIONS
Responsibility for enforcement
Trading standards departments of local authorities in England, Scotland and Wales
and Environmental Health Departments of District Councils in Northern Ireland,
are responsible for day-to-day enforcement of toy safety Regulations. They have
a statutory duty to enforce these, and other safety regulations, using the provisions
of the Consumer Protection Act 1987 and are able to seize toys which are suspected
of being unsafe, suspend from sale toys which do not comply with the toy safety
Regulations and bring prosecutions against suppliers (see Annex I). This applies
whether the toys originate in another member State or were imported direct into
the UK from a third country.
Power to order tests where technical information does not exist
Where the required information (see page 12) cannot be produced, enforcement
authorities have the power to require toys to be tested at the supplier’s own expense
(regulation 11(3)) for the purpose of establishing whether the essential safety
requirements have been satisfied.
OFFENCES, PROCEEDINGS, DUE DILIGENCE DEFENCE AND PENALTIES
Offences: in relation to a manufacturer, authorised representative or importer in
It is an offence for a manufacturer, authorised representative or importer to supply
! which do not satisfy the essential safety requirements (this includes
not jeopardising the safety or health of users or third parties when used
as intended or in a foreseeable way, bearing in mind the normal
behaviour of children (regulation 13)); or
! which do not carry the CE marking representing the declaration by the
manufacturer or his authorised representative or the required name
and address details and certain other information (regulations 10(1)
and 10(8)); or
! for which the relevant information (see Annex F) does not exist within
the UK or elsewhere in the Community (regulations 11(1) and 11(2)) -
see also page 12.
Offences: in relation to other suppliers in the UK
It is an offence for a supplier other than those referred to above to supply toys
! would jeopardise the safety or health of users or third parties when
used as intended or in a foreseeable way, bearing in mind the normal
behaviour of children (regulation 13); or,
! do not bear the CE marking or the name and address details of the
person who first placed them on the Community market and certain
other information (regulations (10(1) and 10(8)).
Time limit for bringing prosecutions
The Regulations require that any prosecution for an offence must be brought
within 12 months from the commission of that offence (regulation 15).
It is an offence to contravene the terms of a suspension notice issued by a local
authority trading standards department, or a prohibition notice issued by the
Secretary of State.
Due diligence defence
In appropriate circumstances, a supplier may have access to a defence of due
diligence (see Annex I).
Offences (regulation 13) are subject to penalties, on summary conviction (that is,
in a magistrates’ court), of a fine not exceeding £5000 or a maximum prison term
of six months, or both (section 12 of the 1987 Act). Where a supplier does not
comply with a request to have toys tested (regulation 11(3)) - see also page 15 -
within a reasonable time the penalties, on summary conviction, are a term of
imprisonment of not more than three months or a fine not exceeding £5000.
Liability of persons other than the principal offender
Where a person (the ‘principal offender’) has committed an offence under the
Regulations and this was due to the act or default of another person, proceedings
may be brought against that other person whether or not proceedings are also
brought against the principal offender.
Liability of company officers
Where it can be shown that an offence has been committed with the consent or
connivance, or is attributable to any neglect on the part of any director, manager,
secretary or similar officer of the body corporate, such persons (in addition to the
body corporate) may also be proceeded against.
THE HOME AUTHORITY PRINCIPLE
The Local Authorities Co-ordinating Body on Food and Trading Standards
(LACOTS) promotes the ‘home authority’ principle which applies to all safety and
trading standards matters. Under this, the local authority for the decision making
place of an enterprise (usually a business’s headquarters or main place of business)
accepts the primary responsibility for offering advice and guidance on a regular
basis on safety, and other related matters, to the enterprise. Other local authorities
are expected to liaise with the relevant home authority on any safety matters
arising from the products supplied by that business. Businesses are therefore
encouraged to make contact with, and seek advice on any particular matter from,
their local home trading standards authority.
The home authority principle is aimed at promoting uniformity of approach to trading
standards matters, reducing duplication and assisting businesses to comply with
the law. LACOTS monitors the effectiveness of the principle and fulfils a role in
resolving any differences of interpretation in appropriate cases.
A booklet describing the home authority principle is available from: LACOTS,
10 Albert Embankment, London SE1 7SP (Tel: 020 7840 7200).
Availability of texts of the Regulations and the 1987 Act: the Toys (Safety)
Regulations 1995 (ISBN 0 11 054870 1), other regulations mentioned in this guide,
and the Consumer Protection Act 1987 (ISBN 0 10 544387 5) are available from
The Stationery Office on 020 7873 9090 and its agents.
Availability of text of the Relevant National Standards: BS EN 71 and other
standards can be obtained from BSI Sales at 389 Chiswick High Road, Chiswick,
London W4 4AL. Tel: 020 8996 7000, Fax: 020 8996 7001.
Availability of text of the Directive: The complete text of the Toys Safety Directive
(Council Directive of 3 May 1988 on the approximation of the laws of the member
States concerning the safety of toys (88/378/EEC) has been published in the
Official Journal of the European Communities (No L187 of 16.7.1988, pages 1 - 13).
Copies of this text (and other editions of the Official Journal), are available from
The Stationery Office Publications Centre and from the European Information
Centres and European Documentation Centres located throughout the United
Kingdom, who may provide them for a modest charge.
Other European legislation: Guidance booklets on other European directives
mentioned in this guide may be obtained from the DTI’s Publications Orderline on
0870 1502 500.
Policy matters on the toy safety Regulations and Directive: Christine Hennessy,
Department of Trade and Industry, Consumer Safety Unit, Room 428, 1 Victoria
Street, London SW1H 0ET. Tel: 020 7215 0360. Fax: 020 7215 0357.
Enquiries on the toy safety Standards: BSI Customer Services, 389 Chiswick
High Road, Chiswick, London W4 4AL. Tel: 020 8996 9001.
Please note that the DTI Consumer Safety Unit does not supply
copies of the above documents.
1 Authorised representative
An authorised representative means the manufacturer’s representative
established in the Community who is authorised by a manufacturer for a particular
purpose so as to be able to act on the manufacturer’s behalf. It is clearly important
that anyone claiming to hold such an appointment should be able to substantiate
this by reference to written authorisation from the manufacturer. Such authorisation
should specify the activities for which the person is authorised and the
responsibilities placed upon him by the manufacturer.
Authorised representatives may be appointed for the purpose of:
(a) supplying toys in the UK, arranging for the appropriate testing and
consequential CE marking, and where relevant, name and address
marking for such toys;
(b) maintaining the relevant information (ie the technical file, see Annex F).
Although it is expected that the two functions will normally be the responsibility of
one authorised representative, the Regulations (and the Directive) do not preclude
a manufacturer appointing a representative for purpose (a) and another for (b) -
an example might be where a manufacturer outside the Community did not want
the representative authorised to place toys on the market to have access to
confidential manufacturing information.
A manufacturer in the UK is not precluded from appointing an authorised
representative in the UK or elsewhere in the Community. In practice, this will allow
a UK manufacturer to appoint an ‘own brand supplier’ as his authorised
representative so that the name and address of the own brand supplier may appear
on the toy.
The European Committee for Standardisation responsible for preparing harmonised
standards other than those dealing with electrical properties. Membership consists
of the 18 European Economic Area countries and Switzerland. The British
Standards Institution represents the UK and delegations to meetings of CEN
technical committees are drawn from the relevant BSI technical committee.
The European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation responsible for
preparing harmonised standards for electrical products - including the electrical
safety of toys. Details of membership are as for CEN.
4 The Community
Means the European Economic Area (EEA) which comprises the 15 members of
the European Community, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein.
5 Deciding whether a product is a ‘toy’
For the purpose of the Regulations a toy is defined as:
“any product or material designed or clearly intended for use in play by
children of less than 14 years of age, but excluding those products
specified in Schedule 3 [to the Regulations]”.
Thus, items listed in Annex B (which reproduces Schedule 3) are not regarded as
toys for the purpose of the Regulations. They do not therefore come within the
scope of the Regulations but they must, like all consumer goods, be reasonably
safe as required by the General Product Safety Regulations 1994 or any specific
EC directives which may apply to them.
Only the courts can decide whether an item comes within the above definition of
a toy but when deciding whether or not an item comes within the above definition
and is covered by the Regulations the following should be borne in mind:
! all elements of the definition, and in particular ‘use in play’ - which
implies some form of interaction between child and product - should be
given due weight in relation to the particular item in question;
! not every item sold in a toy shop will necessarily be a toy within the
meaning of the above definition;
! the packaging of an item may give an indication of the intended purpose
of the item but should not on its own be taken as conclusive;
! it must not be assumed that all items intended for use by children will
! items (e.g. types of mobiles) which are intended for very young children
and which the manufacturer considers could not be ‘used in play’ by
them could be ‘used in play’ by their older brothers or sisters;
! the fact that a ‘relevant national standard’ (see section 11 below) does
not cover an item - or indeed that such a standard specifically states
that it does not cover an item - does not necessarily mean that the item
is not a toy for the purpose of the Regulations;
! an item may be a toy as well as having another function;
! there will be some products (e.g. toy steam engines) which might be
regarded as toys but are specifically excluded from the scope of the
Regulations. Such items are listed at Annex B and must not be CE
! any label or statement on, or with, an item indicating that it is not a toy,
or is not intended for anyone under 14 years, would not necessarily be
regarded as conclusive by enforcement authorities.
If in doubt, it is advisable to work through the above criteria so as to be able to
discuss and, if necessary, defend the decision (i.e. a toy or not a toy) with
enforcement authorities - or in some cases, in court.
6 General Product Safety Regulations 1994
The General Product Safety Regulations 1994 (SI 1994 No 2328) came into force
on 3 October 1994 and implement the Council Directive on general product safety
(92/59/EEC). A guidance booklet on these Regulations is available from:
DTI Publications Orderline
London SW1W 8YT
Tel: 0870 1502 500 (national rate)
Fax: 0870 1502 333
Minicom: 0870 1502 100
Unlike the authorised representative, the importer has no preferential relationship
with the manufacturer. Therefore, if neither the manufacturer nor his authorised
representative is based in the Community, the importer into the Community is
responsible for placing the toys he imports on the Community market. In this
capacity he must keep the relevant information available for inspection by
enforcement authorities and his name and address details must appear on, or
with, the toys.
The manufacturer may be established in the Community or elsewhere. In either
case, he may appoint an authorised representative (who must be established in
the Community) to act on his behalf - see section 1.
9 Member State
Means a member country of the European Economic Area (EEA) - see section 4.
10 New Approach directives
A ‘New Approach directive’ is one produced under the provisions of Council
Resolution of 7 May 1985 on a New Approach to Technical Harmonisation and
Standards (85/C/136/01), published in the Official Journal of the European
Communities (C276) on 4 June 1985. As at August 1999, 21 such directives,
which include a CE marking requirement, had been adopted, covering a wide
range of consumer products - including simple pressure vessels, toys, construction
products, machinery, personal protective equipment, gas appliances,
telecommunications equipment, medical devices, electrical equipment operated
at 50V - 1000 AC/ 75V - 1500V DC, and the electromagnetic compatibility of
electrically operated products (including battery powered).
11 Relevant national standards
Only ‘relevant national standards’ can be used as the basis for CE marking in
accordance with method 1 as set out on page 9 and Annex D. They must also be
used as far as possible by approved bodies when undertaking EC typeexaminations.
A relevant national standard means a standard, the reference number of which;
(a) is published in the United Kingdom (by DTI), or in another member
State, and in the Official Journal of the European Communities; and
(b) corresponds to a harmonised standard produced by CEN or CENELEC
in compliance with a mandate from the Commission and member States
for the purpose of the EC Directive on toy safety.
In the case of toys, there are harmonised European standards specifically produced
for use with the Toys Safety Directive by CEN or CENELEC and transposed into a
national standard by any one of the member States of the Community. Only when
all the following steps have been completed does a standard become a relevant
national standard and for use as described in the body of this guide:
! following discussion by member States, a formal mandate is issued by
the European Commission to CEN or CENELEC, as appropriate,
requesting that they produce standards for use with the Directive and
which give adequate detail to the essential safety requirements;
! the standards are drawn up, voted on and accepted by all CEN/
CENELEC members (see sections on CEN and CENELEC above) using
a weighted majority voting system. If a standard receives sufficient votes
it becomes a harmonised European standard and numbered in the
appropriate series (e.g. EN 71);
! the European Commission must publish the references of the
harmonised European standards in the Official Journal of the European
! member States must transpose the standards into their own national
standards system without change except for translation (the
responsibility of the British Standards Institution (BSI) in the UK), and
formally publish the national reference (undertaken by DTI’s Consumer
Safety Unit in the UK).
As at August 1999 the following relevant national standards for toys have been
BS 5665: Part 1:1989 EN 71: Part 1:1988: Mechanical and Physical Properties
(until 31 January 2001)
BS EN 71 - 1:1998: Mechanical and Physical Properties
BS EN 71 - 2:1994: Flammability
BS EN 71 - 3:1995: Specification for Migration of Certain Elements
BS EN 71 - 4:1998: Experimental Sets for Chemistry and Related Activities
BS EN 71 - 5:1993: Chemical Toys (sets) other than Experimental Sets
BS EN 71 - 6:1995: Graphical Symbol for Age Warning Labelling
BS EN 50088:1996: Safety of Electrical Toys
Products not regarded as toys
The following are not toys for the purpose of the Toys (Safety) Regulations 1995.
(However, in most cases they are subject to the General Product Safety Regulations
1994 (see section 6 of Annex A) and may be subject to other European legislation.)
1. Christmas decorations.
2. Detailed scale models for adult collectors.
3. Equipment intended to be used collectively in playgrounds.
4. Sports equipment.
5. Aquatic equipment intended to be used in deep water.
6. Folk dolls and decorative dolls and other similar articles for adult collectors.
7. ‘Professional’ toys installed in public places (shopping centres, stations etc.).
8. Puzzles with more than 500 pieces or without picture, intended for specialists.
9. Air guns and air pistols.
10. Fireworks, including percussion caps (1).
11. Slings and catapults.
12. Sets of darts with metallic points.
13. Electric ovens, irons or other functional products operated at a nominal voltage
exceeding 24 volts.
14. Products containing heating elements intended for use under the supervision
of an adult in a teaching context.
15. Vehicles with combustion engines.
16. Toy steam engines.
17. Bicycles designed for sport or for travel on the public highway.
18. Video toys that can be connected to a video screen, operated at a nominal
voltage exceeding 24 volts.
19. Babies’ dummies.
20. Faithful reproductions of real firearms.
21. Fashion jewellery for children.
(1) With the exception of percussion caps specifically designed for use in toys without prejudice to
the provisions of the Explosives Act 1875.
Essential safety requirements for toys
I GENERAL PRINCIPLES
1. The users of toys as well as third parties must be protected against health
hazards and risk of physical injury when toys are used as intended or in a
foreseeable way, bearing in mind the normal behaviour of children. Such
risks are those:
(a) which are connected with the design, construction or composition of
(b) which are inherent in the use of the toy and cannot be completely
eliminated by modifying the toy’s construction and composition without
altering its function or depriving it of its essential properties.
2. (a) The degree of risk present in the use of a toy must be commensurate
with the ability of the users, and where appropriate their supervisors, to
cope with it. This applies in particular to toys which, by virtue of their
functions, dimensions and characteristics, are intended for use by
children under 36 months.
(b) To observe this principle, a minimum age for users of toys and/or the
need to ensure that they are used only under adult supervision must
be specified where appropriate.
3. Labels on toys and/or their packaging and the instructions for use which
accompany them must draw the attention of users or their supervisors fully
and effectively to the risks involved in using them and to the ways of avoiding
II PARTICULAR RISKS
1 Physical and mechanical properties
(a) Toys and their parts and, in the case of fixed toys, their anchorages,
must have the requisite mechanical strength and, where appropriate,
stability to withstand the stresses to which they are subjected during
use without breaking or becoming liable to distortion at the risk of causing
(b) Accessible edges, protrusions, cords, cables and fastenings on toys
must be so designed and constructed that the risks of physical injury
from contact with them are reduced as far as possible.
(c) Toys must be so designed and constructed as to minimise the risk of
physical injury which could be caused by the movement of their parts.
(d) Toys, and their component parts, and any detachable parts of toys
which are clearly intended for use by children under 36 months must
be of such dimensions as to prevent their being swallowed and/or
(e) Toys, and their parts and the packaging in which they are contained for
retail sale must not present risk of strangulation or suffocation.
(f) Toys intended for use in shallow water which are capable of carrying or
supporting a child on the water must be designed and constructed so
as to reduce as far as possible, taking into account the recommended
use of the toy, any risk of loss of buoyancy of the toy and loss of support
afforded to the child.
(g) Toys which it is possible to get inside and which thereby constitute an
enclosed space for occupants must have a means of exit which the
latter can open easily from the inside.
(h) Toys conferring mobility on their users must, as far as possible,
incorporate a braking system which is suited to the type of toy and is
commensurate with the kinetic energy developed by it. Such a system
must be easy for the user to operate without risk of ejection or physical
injury for the user or for third parties.
(I) The form and composition of projectiles and the kinetic energy they
may develop when fired from a toy designed for that purpose must be
such that, taking into account the nature of the toy, there is no
unreasonable risk of physical injury to the user or to third parties.
(j) Toys containing heating elements must be so constructed as to ensure
(i) the maximum temperature of any accessible surfaces does not
cause burns when touched;
(ii) liquids and gases contained within toys do not reach temperatures
or pressures which are such that their escape from a toy, other
than for reasons essential to the proper functioning of the toy,
might cause burns, scalds or other physical injury.
(a) Toys must not constitute a dangerous flammable element in the child’s
environment. They must therefore be composed of materials which:
1. do not burn if directly exposed to a flame or spark or other potential
seat of fire; or
2. are not readily flammable (the flame goes out as soon as the
ignition source is removed); or
3. if they do ignite, burn slowly and present a low rate of spread of
the flame; or
4. irrespective of the toy’s chemical composition, are treated so as
to delay the combustion process.
Such combustible materials must not constitute a risk of ignition for
other materials used in the toy.
(b) Toys which, for reasons essential to their functioning, contain dangerous
substances or preparations as defined in Council Directive 67/548/EEC
(implemented in United Kingdom law as the Classification, Packaging
and Labelling of Dangerous Substances Regulations 1984 and
subsequent amending Regulations), in particular materials and
equipment for chemistry experiments, model assembly, plastic or
ceramic moulding, enamelling, photography or similar activities, must
not contain, as such, substances or preparations which may become
flammable due to the loss of non-flammable volatile components.
(c) Toys must not be explosive or contain elements or substances likely to
explode when used as intended or in a foreseeable way, bearing in
mind the normal behaviour of children. This provision does not apply to
toy percussion caps, for which reference should be made to point 10 of
Annex B and the related footnote.
(d) Toys and, in particular, chemical games and toys, must not contain, as
such, substances or preparations:
! which, when mixed, may explode:
i. through chemical reaction, or through heating;
ii. when mixed with oxidizing substances.
! which contain volatile components which are flammable in air and
liable to form flammable or explosive vapour/air mixture.
3 Chemical properties
1. Toys must be so designed and constructed that, when used as specified
in Article 2(1) of the Toys Safety Directive (1), they do not present health
hazards or risks of physical injury by ingestion, inhalation or contact
with the skin, mucous tissues or eyes.
They must in all cases comply with the relevant Community legislation
relating to certain categories of products or to the prohibition, restriction
of use or labelling of certain dangerous substances and preparations.
(1) that is ‘when they are used as intended or in a foreseeable way, bearing in mind the normal
behaviour of children’.
2. In particular, for the protection of children’s health, bioavailability resulting
from the use of toys must not, as an objective, exceed the following
levels per day:
0,2 μg for antimony;
0,1 μg for arsenic;
25,0 μg for barium;
0,6 μg for cadmium;
0,3 μg for chromium;
0,7 μg for lead;
0,5 μg for mercury,
5,0 μg for selenium.
or such other values as may be laid down for these or other substances
in Community legislation based on scientific evidence.
The bioavailability of these substances means the soluble extract having
3. Toys must not contain dangerous substances or preparations within
the meaning of Directives 67/548/EEC and 88/379/EEC in amounts
which may harm the health of children using them. In all events it is
strictly forbidden to include, in a toy, dangerous substances or
preparations if they are intended to be used as such while the toy is
However, where a limited number of substances or preparations are
essential to the functioning of certain toys, in particular materials and
equipment for chemistry experiments, model assembly, plastic or
ceramic moulding, enamelling, photography or similar activities, they
are permitted up to a maximum concentration level to be defined for
each substance or preparation by mandate to the European Committee
for Standardisation (CEN) according to the procedure of the committee
set up by Directive 83/189/EEC, provided the permitted substances
and preparations comply with the Community classification rules in
respect of labelling, without prejudice to point 4 of schedule 4 to the
4 Electrical properties
(a) Electric toys must not be powered by electricity of a nominal voltage
exceeding 24 volts and no part of the toy may exceed 24 volts.
(b) Parts of toys which are connected to, or liable to come into contact
with, a source of electricity capable of causing electric shock, together
with the cables or other conductors through which electricity is conveyed
to such parts, must be properly insulated and mechanically protected
so as to prevent the risk of such shock.
(c) Electric toys must be so designed and constructed as to ensure that
the maximum temperatures reached by all directly accessible surfaces
are not such as to cause burns when touched.
Toys must be so designed and manufactured as to meet the requirements of
hygiene and cleanliness in order to avoid any risk of infection, sickness and
Toys must not contain radioactive elements or substances in forms or
proportions likely to be detrimental to a child’s health. Council Directive
80/836/Euratom shall apply.
Satisfying the essential safety requirements
Method 1: self-certification that a toy has been manufactured in conformity
with relevant national standards (regulation 6)
1 A toy manufactured in accordance with the ‘relevant national standards’ shall
be deemed to meet the essential safety requirements if the standards cover
all the elements of the essential safety requirements applicable to that
particular toy. Where this method is used, CE marking is affixed as a
declaration by the manufacturer, or his authorised representative, that,
amongst other things, the toy bearing it satisfies the essential safety
requirements and has been manufactured in accordance with the
relevant national standards.
2 Although the Regulations do not specify that tests must be carried out to
support a self-certification by the manufacturer or his authorised
representative, information supporting CE marking declaration must be
maintained (see page 12 and Annex F) and the conformity assessment part
of the required information will, in many cases, entail using the services of
an independent test laboratory.
Method 2: manufacture in accordance with a model which has been EC typeexamined
3 Although it is open to manufacturers or their authorised representatives in
the Community to apply for EC type-examinations this procedure will only be
legally required in a limited number of cases - e.g. where the relevant national
standards are inadequate to establish compliance with the essential safety
4 This will be the case where relevant national standards do not exist for a
particular area of the essential safety requirements applicable to a toy or
such standards are available but are not comprehensive in that regard. The
manufacturer or his authorised representative must submit a sample of the
toy (the ‘model’), together with other information as specified in the
Regulations (regulation 9), to an approved body for EC type-examination.
This can be an approved body in any member State.
5 The approved body will perform such tests and examinations as are necessary
for it to decide whether or not the toy satisfies the essential safety
requirements and, if so, the body will issue an EC type-examination certificate.
When undertaking EC type-examinations an approved body must use, as
far as possible, the relevant national standards. Where such standards
do not cover all the essential safety requirements applicable to a toy, reference
must be made to any harmonised European standards which are relevant
for the purpose. Where these procedures are insufficient to establish whether
a toy satisfies the essential safety requirements, the approved body must
then use its professional judgement to devise any additional test procedures
which may be required to allow it to decide whether or not the sample satisfies
the applicable essential safety requirements.
6 Once an EC type-examination certificate has been issued in respect of a toy
sample the manufacturer must ensure that his production toys comply with
that sample. He, or his authorised representative, is then able to CE mark
each production toy as a self-declaration that it has been manufactured in
accordance with a specimen which is the subject of an EC typeexamination
7 An approved body in the UK must provide a copy of that certificate on request
and, on reasonable request, a copy of any design and manufacturing schedule
submitted to it, together with reports on the tests and inspections it has carried
out to the Secretary of State, the European Commission, another member
State or another approved body.
8 An approved body in the UK which refuses to issue an EC type-examination
certificate must inform the applicant, the Secretary of State, and the European
Commission in writing, giving the reasons for the refusal.
9 Equivalent provisions to those in paragraphs 7 and 8 above apply to approved
bodies in other member States.
10 Note that, as with method 1, information supporting the CE marking
declaration is required to be maintained (see page 12 and Annex F).
EC type-examination certificates for toys may only be issued
by a body established in the Community and notified by a
member State under the terms of the Toys Safety Directive.
(See page 14.)
11 EC type-examination certificates must be supported by reports which give
full information on tests devised and carried out, together with details of
research undertaken, by the approved body to establish that a toy
manufactured in accordance with the sample submitted to it will satisfy the
essential safety requirements applicable to it.
Warnings, name and address details and
other safety information which must
Toys must be accompanied by appropriate, clearly legible warnings in order to
reduce inherent risks in their use as described in the essential requirements, and
1 Toys not intended for children under 36 months
Toys which might be dangerous for children under 36 months of age must
bear a warning, for example: ‘Not suitable for children under 36 months’ or
‘Not suitable for children under three years’ together with a brief indication,
which may also appear in the instructions for use, of the specific risks calling
for this restriction (1).
This provision does not apply to toys which, on account of their function,
dimensions, characteristics, properties or other cogent grounds, are manifestly
unsuitable for children under 36 months.
2 Slides, suspended swings and rings, trapezes, ropes and similar toys
attached to a crossbeam
Such toys shall be accompanied by instructions drawing attention to the
need to carry out the checks and maintenance of the main parts (suspensions,
fixings, anchorages etc.) at intervals, and pointing out that, if these checks
are not carried out, the toy may cause a fall or overturn.
Instructions must also be given as to correct assembly of the toy, indicating
those parts which can present dangers if it is incorrectly assembled.
3 Functional toys (2)
Functional toys or their packaging shall bear the marking ‘Warning: to be
used under the direct supervision of an adult’.
In addition, these toys shall be accompanied by directions giving working
instructions as well as the precautions to be taken by the user, with the
warning that failure to take these precautions would expose the user to the
hazards - to be specified - normally associated with the appliance or product
of which the toy is a scale model or an imitation. It will also be indicated that
the toy must be kept out of the reach of very young children.
(1) BS EN 71 - 6:1995 specifies requirements for the use and design of a graphical symbol for age
warnings. The age warning can be given by the symbol or written text.
(2) ‘Functional toys’ means toys which are used in the same way as, and are often scale models of,
appliances or installations intended for adults.
4 Toys containing inherently dangerous substances or preparations;
(a) Without prejudice to the application of the provisions laid down in
Community directives on the classification, packaging and labelling of
dangerous substances or preparations, the instructions for use of toys
containing inherently dangerous substances or preparations shall bear
a warning of the dangerous nature of these substances or preparations
and an indication of the precautions to be taken by the user in order to
avoid hazards associated with them, which shall be specified concisely
according to the type of toy. The first aid to be given in the event of
serious accidents resulting from the use of this type of toy shall also be
mentioned. It shall also be stated that the toys must be kept out of
reach of very young children.
(b) In addition to the instructions provided for in (a), chemical toys shall
bear the following marking on their packaging:
‘Warning: for children over (1) - years of age only. For use
under adult supervision’.
In particular, the following are regarded as chemical toys: chemistry sets,
plastic embedding sets, miniature workshops for ceramics enamelling or
photography and similar toys.
5 Skates and skateboards for children
If these products are offered for sale as toys they shall bear the marking:
‘Warning: protective equipment should be worn’.
Moreover, the instructions for use shall contain a reminder that the toy must
be used with caution, since it requires great skill, so as to avoid falls or
collisions causing injury to the user and third parties. Some indication shall
also be given as to recommended protective equipment (helmets, gloves,
kneepads, elbow-pads etc.).
6 Toys intended for use in water
The toys intended for use in water defined in Section 11.1(f) of Annex C shall
contain the warning:
‘Warning! Only to be used in water in which the child is within its
depth and under supervision’.
(1) Age to be decided by the manufacturer.
Information to be kept available
The following information must be kept available for inspection by the enforcement
Toys manufactured to the relevant national standards:
! a description of the means (such as the use of a test report or technical
file) whereby the manufacturer ensures conformity of production with
the relevant national standards;
! the addresses of the places of manufacture and storage;
! information concerning the design and manufacture;
! information on which New Approach Directives have been applied.
Toys manufactured in conformity to a model in respect of which an EC typeexamination
certificate has been issued:
! a description of manufacture;
! a description of the means (such as the use of a test report or technical
file) whereby the manufacturer ensures conformity with the approved
! the addresses of the places of manufacture and storage;
! copies of the documents submitted to an approved body with the
application for an EC type-examination certificate;
! the EC type-examination certificate or a certified copy thereof;
! information on which New Approach Directives have been applied.
It is generally accepted that the information should be in the form of a short technical
file (3 - 5 pages is the favoured length), which can be posted or sent by fax when
requested by an enforcement authority in the Community wishing to verify that CE
marking had been legitimately affixed to a toy on sale within the area of its
responsibility. However, enforcement authorities have the right to call for additional
information where the initial file proves inadequate in some way.
Where the non-compliance is not safety related - such as a CE marking which
does not conform with regulation 3(1) - an authority may issue a compliance notice
on a manufacturer or his authorised representative if they are established in the
UK (regulation 10(11)). Compliance notices are intended to give the named person
an opportunity to take action to correct the non-compliance. Enforcement action
can only be taken in respect of the alleged non-compliance if such a notice has
been issued and not acted upon within the time specified in the notice. Where, in
the opinion of an enforcement authority, the toy is likely to jeopardise the
safety or health of any person, the authority can take immediate enforcement
action to safeguard consumers.
The Toys (Safety) Regulations 1989 (SI 1989 No 1275) applied to all toys supplied
for the first time in the United Kingdom from 1 January 1990. They implemented
the Toys Safety Directive (88/378/EEC), which is a New Approach directive (see
section 10 of Annex A). The 1989 Regulations were replaced by the Toys (Safety)
Regulations 1995 (SI 1995 No 204) which came into force on 24 February 1995.
The 1995 Regulations continue the provisions of the 1989 Regulations and
implement the provisions of the CE Marking Directive (93/68/EEC) as it relates to
toys (the latter Directive extends the meaning of the declaration which the CE
The Toys (Safety) Regulations 1974, the Toys (Safety) (Northern Ireland)
Regulations 1975, the Toys (Safety) Regulations 1989 (SI 1989 No 1275), and
the Toys (Safety) Regulations 1993 (SI 1993 No 1547), have been revoked.
Consumer Protection Act 1987 (The 1987 Act)
1 The 1987 Act, among other things, allows for the making of regulations dealing
with the safety of consumer products, sets out penalties for their infringement
and provides powers for the enforcement of such regulations.
Enforcement of consumer safety legislation - including the toys safety
2 Within government, overall policy responsibility for the consumer safety
provisions of the Act (Part 11) rests with the Department of Trade and
Industry’s Consumer Safety Unit. The Consumer Safety Unit is also
responsible for the majority of consumer safety regulations made under the
Act (other parts of government have also made use of the Act’s provisions).
Day-to-day enforcement of consumer safety regulations is primarily the
responsibility of local authority trading standards departments in England,
Scotland and Wales and the Environmental Health Departments of District
Councils in Northern Ireland, who have a statutory duty to enforce consumer
safety legislation. The 1987 Act allows the authorities to exercise the following
! make test purchases;
! issue suspension notices prohibiting the supply of consumer products
which are considered to be unsafe;
! seek information;
! enter premises at any reasonable time;
! apply to a magistrates’ court (sheriffs’ court in Scotland) for an order
for such products to be forfeited and destroyed; and
! bring criminal prosecutions in a magistrates’ court.
3 Enforcement action can be taken at any point in the supply chain. The
Secretary of State may also exercise powers under the 1987 Act.
4 In addition, Customs Officers are empowered to detain goods at the port of
entry for up to three working days to allow enforcement authorities to make
initial enquiries about the safety of the goods detained.
5 The 1987 Act also provides means for suppliers to appeal to a magistrates’
court (sheriffs’ court in Scotland) against a suspension notice and apply for
compensation for costs in certain circumstances.
6 Suppliers are, of course, able to appeal against enforcement action to higher
courts in appropriate circumstances.
7 Suppliers of consumer goods, including toys, may have access to the defence
of due diligence (set out in section 39 of the 1987 Act) which allows a supplier
to argue that he took all reasonable steps and exercised all due diligence to
avoid committing the alleged offence.
8 Where a supplier argues that the commission of the alleged offence was
due to the act or default of another person or due to reliance on information
given him by another person he must notify this defence to the prosecution
not less than seven days before the date of hearing the case. It should be
noted that this is not an automatic defence and will require justification to the
9 The above provisions are set out in Part 11 (sections 12 - 18) and various
sections in Part IV of the 1987 Act.
The above paragraphs on the 1987 Act are intended only to
provide an indication of the Act’s provisions. A proper
understanding of the various provisions can only be gained
by studying the Act itself.