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EN 1090: Where does the accountability lie?

Holding valid certification to EN 1090 enables structural steel or aluminium manufactures to use UKCA or CE markings and legitimately place products on the UK or EU markets.  But who is policing this legal obligation?

This is a question that CfA is often asked.  Is it Trading Standards?  A different governmental compliance agency?  A Bruxellois/Brusselaars bureaucrat?  The answer is that nobody seems to know! 

We have recently raised our concerns with Government and they have provided a detailed response.  If this is something you would like to learn more about, we have reduced part of the response here.

Who are OPSS and where are they in Government?   

  • the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) is the UK’s product regulator 
  • we are responsible for the regulation of most consumer goods and for construction products 
  • we are a departmental office within the Department for Business and Trade 
  • our construction product regulation role is funded by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) and we report to DLUHC Ministers 


 What is OPSS aiming to achieve through regulation of construction products?​     

As an experienced national regulator with responsibility for construction products, it will work to deliver:    

  • safer construction products that can lead to better buildings and better protection for people and communities    
  • confidence and growth in construction product markets through effective regulation and enforcement   


How is OPSS going to go about achieving safer construction products, safer buildings?     

It will do this by:     

  • building on its role as the UK’s product regulator with established links to local authorities and UK standards and testing services    
  • providing clarity and support to businesses on how to comply with the law    
  • overseeing improvements in the investigation of complaints and market surveillance    
  • providing targeted, risk-based proportionate enforcement of construction products regulations    
  • acting firmly and fairly where product risks exist   


What powers does OPSS have?  

  • OPSS is able, on behalf of the DLUHC Secretary of State, to issue notices using powers under the Construction Products Regulations 2013 and the equivalent regulations for Northern Ireland
  • These Notices can compel the provision of information, require that construction products are recalled or removed from sale, and can prohibit the sale of construction products
  • OPSS have a range of investigatory powers in addition to the notices - these include test purchase, seizure, inspection, etc


If there is specific evidence relating to non-compliance, OPSS can be contacted directly so they can consider what actions, if any, may be appropriate. They can be contacted at:

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