Melbourne – 16 August, 2017 – With so many goods being ordered online, we increasingly rely on couriers to deliver them – in sound condition. But there’s mounting reports of products being mishandled and damaged between the warehouse and the customer.
Leading consumer product safety consultant, Gail Greatorex, is asking whether products damaged in transit will be safe to use.
One Australian supplier of children’s products has had to resort to what they called ‘extreme packaging’ to avoid what had become frequent customer complaints about goods arriving damaged.
A bicycle company in The Netherlands even tried to get around the problem by putting a picture of a television on its boxes to get couriers to handle their product with more care.
‘Damage caused in transit could create new hazards or increase existing ones’, Gail said.
‘Manufacturers, importers and retailers all need to understand the risk of product damage and make sure their packaging is fit for purpose. Liability for product safety and compliance rests with the supplier, not the courier.’
Gail said consumers should always check products delivered by a courier before using them, especially if there’s evidence of damage to the packaging.
Consumers should check terms and conditions and whether insurance is covered before making the purchase.
‘If you have concerns once goods arrive, you should contact the seller straight away and take photos before returning them’, Gail added.
Consumers who purchase damaged products from online stores based in Australia may be entitled to a refund under Australian Consumer Law.
More information on this topic is in Gail’s article on the Product Safety Solutions website. The article provides more detail on how both suppliers and consumers can address the issue and includes quotes from the National Online Retail Association and a retail lawyer.
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About Gail Greatorex
Gail Greatorex is astrong advocate for product safety and good product design. Gail worked in consumer product safety with the Australian government for 25 years, mostly at the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission and is now the owner and principal consultant of product safety advisory business, Product Safety Solutions, based in Melbourne, Australia.
About Product Safety Solutions
Product Safety Solutions is run by Gail Greatorex – assisting companies, associations, government agencies, and consumers in product safety and compliance. The business offers guidance in consumer safety standards and bans, product safety compliance, assessing and analysing product hazards, product recall issues, compliance undertakings and other remedies, product testing and certification, technical evidence, and similar business needs. The Product Safety Solutions website is designed as a resource for all those with an interest in safe products.
For more information, visit:
Product Safety Solutions is based in Melbourne, Australia.