Enjoy hazard-free holiday; buy only ICC-marked Christmas lights, DTI tells Aklanons


Enjoy hazard-free holiday; buy only ICC-marked Christmas lights, DTI tells Aklanons

by Venus G. Villanueva

Kalibo, Aklan (14 December) -- With a little more than just a week to celebrate Christmas, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) here is reminding Aklanons who might still catch up with decorations for the season to buy only Christmas lights with Import Commodity Clearance (ICC) mark.

The ICC, according to the DTI, ensures the product's quality and safe use.

"In preparation with the fast-approaching Christmas season, the DTI prompts consumers to be extra cautious in buying Christmas lights to enjoy a hazard-free holiday, " said DTI Secretary Peter Favila in his press information materials sent through DTI provincial offices for awareness of the general public.

"Those cheap and uncertified sets of Christmas lights pose great hazards to its users, such as electric shock and overheating that often leads to fire. Only those Christmas lights with the ICC marks are safe and reliable to use as these products passed the required safety tests and inspections based on a specific standard," Sec. Favila added.

DTI regulates the sale of Christmas lights in the local market to protect consumers from the hazards posed by this critical product. Under the Bureau of Product Standards' (BPS) Product Certification Scheme, all importers of Christmas lights are required to have their import shipments (on a per Bill of Lading basis) subjected to sampling and testing based on the requirement of Philippine National Standards on Christmas lights (PNS 189:2000) at the BPS Testing Center, prior to its sale. Only those importers whose products comply with PNS requirements are issued with the ICC Certificate, and are authorized to affix the ICC mark in their products. The ICC mark comes in sticker form and is not directly printed on the package.

DTI Consumer Welfare Undersecretary Zenaida Maglaya, for her part, stressed that the DTI has only allowed the distribution and sale of sets of Christmas lights with the ICC certificate issued from 2007 to 2009, and requested the buying public to examine this on the ICC stickers before their purchase.

This is important, according to USEC Maglaya, since the wires of Christmas lights become brittle after some time and pose danger to the users.

In earlier pronouncements, DTI-Aklan, through Provincial Director Diosdado P. Cadena, has constantly reminded Aklanons at the approach of the Christmas season to buy only Christmas lights from authorized establishments.

He also told Aklanons to refrain from buying Christmas lights sold at sidewalks or those sold by peddlers. (PIA)

Cabatuan.com - Kasimanwa.com - Diosdado Cadena Jr.

Boracay, Aklan