Consumer Product Safety

Accident Information Special News No.9

April 14, 1997

In April 7, 1997, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry released the accident information collection results (newsletter), which have been collected for preventing the product accidents from occurring and reoccurring. The contents are as follows.

1. Number of Accident Information Collected till the end of February 1997, 932 Cases.

The number of the accident information collected to the National Institute of Technology and Evaluation in the Ministry of International Trade and Industry till the end of February 1997 was 932 cases. It was almost same number with that (906 case) of the same time of the fiscal year 1995, which was the highest since we started (fiscal year 1974) to collect the accident information collection.

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2. Situations of Accidents Classified by Articles

When the 431 cases of the accident, whose investigation was completed, were classified according to the article fields, the accident information related to the three article fields of the domestic electrical appliances (154 cases), the combustion appliances (95 cases), and the vehicle and the vehicle-related products (77 cases) was outnumbered and occupy 76% of the collected product accident information.

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3. Situations of Damage

Out of the 431 accidents whose investigation was completed, approximately 38% (162 cases) of the accidents involve the human injury, approximately 32% (139 cases) spread the damage to that except for the products causing the accidents and among them, the casualties were approximately 6% (26 cases).

  • As for the casualties (26 cases), the accidents caused by the combustion appliances were outnumbered (10 cases).The details were carbon monoxide intoxication, fire, etc.
  • The major origins of the casualties were solely the wrong use and the careless usage, which occupy approximately 62% (16 cases) of the all.The origins other than that are unknown origin, etc.

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4. Origins of Accidents

Out of the 431 accidents whose investigation was completed, those thought to be solely caused by the wrong use and careless usage are the highest, approximately 36% (156 cases) of the all, and excluding the 117 unknown origins, those caused by problems in design, structure, and labeling ranked second, approximately 20% (85 cases).

  • As for the accidents solely caused by the wrong use and the careless usage, the combustion appliances (60 cases) were outnumbered and those caused by the domestic electrical products ranked second (35 cases).
  • The accidents solely caused by problems in the design, structure, and labeling were the domestic electrical products (34 cases), the personal belongings (10 cases), and the leisure goods (10 cases).

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5. Reoccurrence Prevention Measures taken by Enterprises

  • The products reported to be recalled or replaced by releasing the announcements on the newspaper were 14 products (13 companies) such as the oil heater and the hair drier.
  • Besides these, various actions for preventing the reoccurrence were taken by the respective companies such as the improvement of the product, the improvement of the production process, the intensification of the quality control, improvement in the labeling, and the review of the instruction manual.

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6. Reoccurrence Prevention Measures Taken by Ministry of International Trade and Industry

As for the accidents whose origins were unfolded and caused by the product itself, from the viewpoint of the accident reoccurrence prevention, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry instructs the makers and the industries concerned to take necessary actions such as intensification of the management of the production process and, if necessary, takes measures based on the regulations such as the recall order.
Recent exercised orders and accident information announcement results including the names of the makers and the model names performed by the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, were 5 cases including 2 cases of harm prevention orders (roller skates and an baby bed). The two cases of an oil heater and a hair drier having the possibility of the ignition were publicly announced so as to widely inform to the consumer and accelerate the actual effect of the recall.

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 Risk Analysis and Public Relations Division  Product Safety Technology Center  National Institute of Technology and Evaluation
Phone number:+81-6-6612-2066
Fax number:+81-6-6612-1617
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