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Smoke alarms

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12 September 1991


Australian consumers have been urged not to allow adverse publicity about some smoke alarms to deter them from purchasing effective safety products.

The Minister for Justice and Consumer Affairs, Senator Michael Tate, said today there had been considerable concern expressed in the media recently that some smoke alarms on the Australian market may not meet acceptable performance standards.

This is on the basis that they are not tested to the Australian Standard.

"Some of these statements are based on the misconception that smoke alarms which have not been tested to the Australian Standard are necessarily defective.

"There are a number of international standards for smoke alarms, which while not identical to the Australian Standard are designed to result in an effective product", Senator Tate said.

"I am concerned that the allegations may deter consumers from purchasing smoke alarms".

The Minister said Australian businesses are generally conscious of the need for safety related products to meet satisfactory standards.

"However I have requested the Federal Bureau of Consumer Affairs to contact known suppliers of smoke alarms seeking copies of test certificates relating to their product.

"In fact, a number of suppliers have already provided copies of test certificates to my office on their own initiative", Senator Tate said. .

He has also instructed the Bureau to check retail outlets for brands not revealed by the survey.

"If any brand of smoke alarm is revealed to pose a safety hazard, I will consider action under the Trade Practices Act to remove the product from sale and to protect consumers who had purchased the product", Senator Tate said.

Released by Adrian Wild (06) 277 260 C O M M O N W E A LTH PARLIAM ENTARY LIBRARY M iC A H