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New EESS legislation passed

New requirements will be put in place for household electrical goods with the introduction of the Electrical Equipment Safety Scheme (EESS).

The EESS – developed by Australian energy regulators including Energy Safe Victoria and passed into law by the Victorian Government last week – addresses increasing numbers of recalls and deteriorating standards of electrical goods.

The EESS targets importers and manufacturers based in Australia and establishes a national database where suppliers must register as ‘responsible suppliers’.

The national database will be searchable and include a register of certifications, responsible suppliers and registered products. Consumers will be able to check that a product is registered and identify the responsible supplier for the product. This includes purchases made online from Australian suppliers.

A single regulatory compliance mark, known as the RCM, will identify appliances that comply with Australian standards of safety. Regulators will be able to trace product back to the relevant supplier and, if necessary, contact other responsible suppliers that are importing the same or similar equipment.

“When it is implemented, the EESS will empower Victorian consumers to make more informed decisions about the electrical appliances they buy,” Director of Energy Safety, Paul Fearon said.

“It also allows for a significant increase in check-testing by regulators.”

“Previously, Victoria’s electrical equipment safety system was designed for electrical equipment manufactured in Australia by large Australian-based companies. The new EESS requirements address a significant shift where most electrical equipment is now manufactured offshore.”

The EESS Bill passed the Victorian Parliament without amendment on 8 September and is available here.

The EESS is a national program. Victoria is the second jurisdiction to pass an EESS Bill through its parliament after Queensland.

The implementation of the EESS will begin soon.