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What does the accident reporting obligation under the new EU GPSR mean for economic operators?

Compared to the previous regulations, the obligation for manufacturers regarding the reporting of potential hazards of products on the one hand and actual accidents with products on the other has been changed in 5 key points.

Product recalls and safety warnings

Firstly, the GPSR introduces updated legislation in case of product recalls and safety warnings. Manufacturers and online marketplaces are now obligated to immediately notify consumers and market surveillance authorities of product recalls and safety warnings. Consumers with contact information in the Economic Operator’s customer base should be individually informed. All other (potential) users of the related product may be informed through a public notification. Also, the European Commission may require certain manufacturers and online marketplaces to allow consumers to register a product they have purchased in order to be notified directly in case of a product safety recall or safety warning.

Accidents caused by a product

Furthermore, the regulations regarding notification in the event of an accident caused by a product are more stringent. Manufacturers are compelled to notify the authorities via Safety Gate. The co-legislators have introduced criteria that must be met in order for the reporting obligation to apply. The text in the official publication mentions: “occurrences associated with the use of a product that resulted in an individual’s death or in serious adverse effects on their health and safety, permanent or temporary, including injuries, other damages to the body, illnesses and chronic health effects”.

Time limit to file a report

Thirdly, the term to file a report under the new GPSR is “without undue delay from the moment the manufacturer knows about the accident”. 

EU Responsible Person 

Moreover, non-EU-based manufacturers must appoint a so-called Responsible Person in the EU. It is the duty of this delegate to submit a report on the accident to the responsible authorities.

Further obligation for online marketplaces

Lastly, the GPSR now includes a separate clause requiring online marketplaces to promptly report any incident that “results in serious risk to or actual damage of the health or safety of a consumer caused by a product made available on their marketplace.”

More information about the new regulation EU GPSR

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