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Store convicted for breaching Electricity Regs

Media Release
22 October 2008

Mitre 10 store convicted for breaching Electricity Regulations

A Mitre 10 Mega store was convicted in the Waitakere District Court on 20 October 2008, for breaching the Electricity Regulations, by selling a high risk product without first establishing its electrical safety.

Mitre 10 Mega in Henderson, pleaded guilty to selling table lamps without establishing the necessary approval. Under the Electricity Regulations, suppliers are required to ensure that these types of electrical appliances are safe and conform with New Zealand electrical safety requirements before they supply them.

The table lamps, which looked like model cars, planes and trains, could appeal to children who may have thought they were toys. It is very important that electrical safety was established before they were sold.

``A store the size of Mitre 10 should be aware of the requirements placed on them under the Electricity Regulations. The rules are there to encourage suppliers to take responsibility for the safety of the products they offer for sale. Energy Safety takes breaches of the regulations seriously and this seller disregarded them,’’ said Richard Lamb, Ministry of Economic Development, Energy Safety Compliance Officer.

Electrical appliance suppliers must make sure that products they sell comply with New Zealand regulations. It is very important they do this before they supply electrical products on the market. In this case it is unlikely that the table lamps, given their construction, would have gained an approval.

Energy Safety is encouraged by this conviction. It sends a message to companies supplying electrical products that they must meet the requirements of the Electricity Act and Electricity Regulations. It also sends a message to suppliers who do comply, that it is worthwhile doing so.

``We are always willing to work with suppliers to achieve compliance. However, they must recognise that we are prepared to use all the sanctions we have available to us to ensure the safety of electrical products. The rules are in place to protect users and facilitate responsible business,’’ said Richard Lamb.

The successful prosecution was taken by Energy Safety, which is part of the Ministry of Economic Development. Mitre 10 Mega, Henderson, had breached Electricity Regulations 107(a) and 107(aa) and was fined $600 and required to pay costs.

ENDS

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