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A new guide for businesses selling dangerous goods

Businesses have a moral and legal obligation to consider how their products affect consumers. This means assessing product use and what (if any) risk it poses… View Article

RETAIL SOLUTIONS

A new guide for businesses selling dangerous goods

Businesses have a moral and legal obligation to consider how their products affect consumers. This means assessing product use and what (if any) risk it poses to the buyer (or anyone that comes into contact with their wares). This is especially important when it comes to selling dangerous goods.

While often the first and primary concern, direct customers shouldn’t be a retailer’s only apprehension. Instead, it’s also the seller’s responsibility to consider how hazardous products might affect the general public once they’re circulated.

This includes foreseeing adverse outcomes should such products fall into the wrong hands. For instance, products like knives or acid can be misused, posing a potential safety risk to others, sometimes with horrific, even fatal consequences.

That’s why businesses need procedures to ensure that potentially harmful products stay out of reach of those who could mishandle them. For instance, in 2019, the Offensive Weapons Act (OWA) provided businesses supplying various dangerous goods with several guidelines and requirements to help ensure customers’ and society’s safety.

Navigating these laws and regulations can be difficult. That’s why today, we’re directing you to a new information resource by the Business Companion: The Business in Focus guide on Knives, Bladed Items, and Hazardous Materials. This serves as a one-stop aid for traders looking for quick answers on this subject.

Let’s explore this in more detail…

What Does The Guide Cover?

In short, this guide is divided into three parts:

  1. An introduction to the importance of adhering to the Offensive Weapons Act and keeping society safe at large
  2. Part 1: This focuses on acids and other corrosive substances, explosive precursors, or poisons
  3. Part 2: This covers the marketing, sale, and delivery of knives and bladed items

Separated into easy-to-navigate headings, each section introduces retailers to various topics to help them quickly find the answers they’re looking for.

As we just hinted, the first part of the guide provides a background on hazardous acids, explosives, and poisons. Next, it outlines the duty of retailers to ensure their consumers’ safety. Then, it lists both the legal and voluntary commitments conscientious businesses, and retailers should adhere to. Here you can also check which products need reporting and regulating. You benefit from practical guidance for storing, delivering, and labeling such hazards.

Then in the second part, the guide explores the legal side of things. For instance, what defines a knife in the UK, and which types of blades are illegal to sell. Finally, it sets out age checks requirements and informs businesses about the Knives Act of 1997.

Are You Ready to Learn More About Knives, Bladed Items, and Hazardous Materials?

It’s vital for traders selling potentially dangerous items to assume an excellent level of care and responsibility regarding product and customer safety. However, navigating the laws around hazardous wares can be difficult. Fortunately, the Business Companion’s guide provides a simple resource to help ensure compliance is accessible and achievable for all.

View the new guide online here or download the PDF booklet.

Business Companion is a free online resource operated by the Chartered Trading Standards Institute (CTSI) with the support of the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). It hosts a wealth of information for businesses across a wide variety of sectors, providing accurate, reliable and up-to-date guidance on numerous aspects of consumer law.

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