Norwegian Consumer Council: Cheap goods from foreign online stores can be life-threatening

Computer mobile chargingPhoto: Audun Braastad / NTB

The Consumer Council issued a warning for pre-Christmas shopping, noting that goods purchased outside the EU / EEA can be very harmful to health. 

A survey conducted by the European consumer organization BEUC in February shows that two out of three tested products purchased from Amazon, AliExpress, eBay, and Wish, among others, had serious errors.

A total of 250 electrical goods, including toys, children’s clothes, cosmetics, and other potential Christmas presents, were purchased by six consumer groups and tested in accordance with EU and EEA rules.

Faulty goods

Three out of four USB chargers and travel adapters, the vast majority of them cheap and unmarked, showed either overheating or risk of electric shock – or both. 

Smoke alarms were also faulty – none of the seven products passed the test. None of the tested systems reacted to carbon monoxide, while four did not respond to any smoke at all.

Tooth whitening agents also performed poorly – seven out of ten products contained too high levels of hydrogen peroxide, between 14 to 70 times higher than what is allowed in Norway.

Children’s lives and health

The Consumer Council says these findings fit into the series of studies that show that it can be risky to shop in online stores outside the EU / EEA. 

The Council has also uncovered toys that can be directly life-threatening for children and cosmetics that contain harmful substances that are banned in the EU and Norway.

“Toys and cosmetics that contain harmful chemicals, as well as toys that can lead to suffocation or have parts that can get stuck in the stomach, or contain lead and mercury, are among the startling findings,” Gunstein Instefjord of the Consumer Council noted.

© NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today


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