Electrical equipment safety systems
The requirements to sell electrical equipment in Queensland changed on 1 March 2013 with the introduction of a new Electrical Equipment Safety System (EESS) and changes to the Electrical Safety Regulation 2013.
This EESS was introduced to improve consumer safety for household electrical equipment sold in Queensland. It will lead to harmonised legislation throughout Australia and enable the public to search a national database of responsible suppliers and electrical equipment registrations for the first time. The database will allow electrical equipment to be easily traced to the supplier and its legal supply in Australia and New Zealand to be verified.
The EESS changes the requirements for businesses that import, manufacture or sell in-scope electrical equipment. All in-scope electrical equipment sold in Queensland must be linked to a registered responsible supplier prior to sale. If it is Level 2 or Level 3 equipment it must also registered on the national database.
Technical safety requirements have not changed under the EESS, but tighter evidence of conformity is required for some items.
This system is a self-funding, user-pays system where registration fees fund improved compliance, surveillance and post-market enforcement activities.
Will the changes affect me?
To assist manufacturers, importers and suppliers during the changeover to the new system, transitional arrangements will be in place.
Manufacturers and importers
- Importers and on-shore manufacturers needed to register as responsible suppliers before 1 September 2013 and register certain equipment they sell.
- The Regulatory Compliance Mark to be applied to electrical equipment has a three year phase in period for responsible suppliers and five years for sellers.
Retailer, wholesaler, internet, second-hand, auction and market sellers are required to ensure the products they supply are electrically safe and meet the relevant standards. Sellers of new in-scope electrical equipment must also ensure that their products are linked to a registered responsible supplier.
There are still safety requirements for electrical equipment that is not in-scope.
Implementation of the EESS
Businesses or individuals with current valid certificates issued under a corresponding law will continue to be recognised until the certificate expires, as long as they are registered on the national database. Responsible suppliers may use these certificates to register on the national database.
The EESS will be progressively implemented across Victoria, Western Australia, South Australia, Tasmania, Northern Territory and the Australian Capital Territory throughout 2013. New Zealand will have complementary legislation, but the EESS is not being implemented in New South Wales.
Further information, including information on how to register on the Electrical Regulators Authorities Council (ERAC) national database, is available on the ERAC website.
Electrical equipment that is not in-scope electrical equipment (for example, a commercial oven in a bakery) still needs to be electrically safe.
The rules give guidance to industry on how to comply with the EESS and ensure electrical equipment is certified in a consistent way.
Low voltage equipment rated 50 Vac to 1000 Vac and designed or marketed for household or personal use.
The new Electrical Equipment Safety System has changed the marking requirements to a single Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM).
The database records the registration details of responsible suppliers of electrical equipment in Australia and New Zealand.
Prior to offering level 3 electrical equipment for sale/supply in Queensland, a Certificate of Conformity must be issued.
The National Association of Testing Authorities (NATA) is the Australian peak body for accreditation of laboratories for testing to electrical safety standards or to energy efficiency standards.
The legislation requires all responsible suppliers selling goods into participating jurisdictions to be registered on the national database.
Meeting the pre-market requirements for selling in-scope electrical equipment is only the first step for a responsible supplier.
Sellers of second hand in-scope electrical equipment must ensure that it is sold with information on how to use it in an electrically safe way.
- Last updated
- 23 May 2019