Page 5: Standardization and safety
Consumer safety features strongly in the setting of standards. For example, with UK wine consumption rising, opening wine bottles safely has become a higher priority. Recently, the British Glass Manufacturers Confederation (BGMC) helped to create a set of guidelines for the design of a cork removal device for wine bottles so that the operation can be carried out safely.
There are several standards for the manufacture of different glass bottles, for example for carbonated soft drinks, and compliance with them enables production consistency in the glass industry. This also helps British glass manufacturers to meet safety standards that retailers are looking for.
Today, UK legislation requires manufacturers to comply with European Union Directives, and standards are a good way of doing this. A good example is of the Directive for electrical equipment that relates to safety standards for household equipment such as televisions, DVD players and vacuum cleaners.
Again, and happily for even the most inquisitive DIY person, modern standards require that consumers cannot easily reach the parts of domestic products that involve high voltages so that electrocution risks are minimised.
BSI's stakeholder approach means that consumers' views have high priority. When, for example, consumers complained that the outside of some toasters became dangerously hot, new standards of heat insulation were introduced.