On 15 April last the European Regulation on Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) took effect. An important change for producers and importers of consumer products is the qualification of oven gloves and pot-holders as PPE. What are the consequences of this for you as a producer or importer?
Oven gloves as PPE
Since 15 April stringent safety requirements have been applicable to PPE that is sold on the European market. Oven gloves and pot-holders must undergo a conformity test and must be provided with a CE quality mark. The technical dossier is assessed by a European certified test institute in an EU type test. This means that every format, design and colour of oven glove that you sell must be tested.
At the moment there are no harmonised standards applicable to pot-holders and oven gloves with which you can demonstrate an assumption of conformity: the standard is still in the design phase. However, the Regulation is clear about the safety requirements and there are several methods to test oven gloves against them.
What safety requirements are now applicable?
At the moment there are many pot-holders and oven gloves available in the shops that do not comply with the new Regulation. Oven gloves and pot-holders must be produced in such manner that they do not include materials that are hazardous to the skin. Oven gloves must also be of a minimum size in order that an average hand fits properly in them and they must also protect sufficiently against the holding of hot objects. Also after multiple washings the oven glove or pot-holder must be safe. In addition, marking rules are applicable that provide for correct use of the PPE and describe the potential associated risks.
EU type test is complex
The EU type test can be a complicated and lengthy process. The products must in advance have been tested at a test institute on the aforementioned criteria – this is usually possible in the country of production. The test report is then assessed by an EU certified assessment institute established in the EU as part of an extensive technical dossier. The technical dossier must comply with several requirements before it is assessed as correct and the CE quality mark can be placed.
No idea how you should start with this? Précon Quality Services can assist you in this. We have close contacts with the European assessment institutes that perform the EU type tests as well as contacts with test laboratories in, inter alia, China, Hong Kong and India that test the products in conformity with legislation. Your safe oven gloves in safe hands!