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Store fined after Redditch investigation into unsafe pens
10:10am Sunday 13th October 2013 in Local
AN investigation by Worcestershire Regulatory Services at a Redditch store has lead to a company being fined £5,000 for supplying unsafe pens.
On October 3, Redditch Magistrates imposed the maximum fine available to them on the Liverpool-based company TJ Morris, which trades as Home Bargains Stores nationally. In addition they were ordered to pay £1,685 costs with a £120 victim surcharge.
This follows a complaint to WRS in July 2012, from a Rubery resident regarding a pack of ball point pens he had bought from a Home Bargains store in Pwllheli.
The consumer believed the pens were unsafe as they did not have ventilation holes in the caps. Although his concerns were raised with the store manager, no action was taken at that time.
Following an investigation, which included a test purchase at the Redditch store by Worcestershire Regulatory Services, it was found the pens were not compliant with BS 7272 Writing and Marking Instruments.
This means the pens did not provide any safety measure for the protection of children against asphyxiation and these had been imported by the company and subsequently sold in Home Bargains Stores throughout the UK.
This in turn became a breach of the General Product Safety Regulations 2005 as the pens were found to be unsafe.
Around 11,280 packs each containing 10 unsafe pens had been imported by the company and subsequently sold in Home Bargains Stores.
Once informed by Worcestershire Regulatory Services the company, which pleaded guilty, did recall all of the unsafe pens.
WRS joint committee chair Lucy Hodgson said: “It is down to the diligence of this member of the public in reporting his concerns that no injuries, fatal or otherwise were sustained.
“It is important to report any concerns about products to our officers – it really could save a life.”
To report anything to Trading Standards, call them on 01905 822799.
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