Consumer Product Safety Trends: Sinmac Releases Statistics

In a recent development aimed at improving consumer product safety and regulatory oversight, Brazil’s National Institute of Metrology, Standardization and Industrial Quality (Inmetro) has launched the revamped Consumer Accident Monitoring System (Sinmac). This initiative allows individuals to report incidents involving products or services purchased in the national market. The updated form, now available on the Inmetro website, makes it easier for consumers to report incidents, highlighting details such as the product brand, model, packaging information and the circumstances of the incident.

Márcio André Brito, President of Inmetro, emphasized the importance of public participation in reporting incidents. He noted that the migration of data to a dedicated database will improve the efficiency and flexibility of reporting, allowing for better analysis and information compression.

For consumers, the redesigned form offers a more user-friendly interface, streamlining the process of providing critical details about accidents or incidents. This data is critical to identifying potential hazards and improving regulatory enforcement across the national marketplace.

João Nery, Director of Conformity Assessment (Dconf), explained the difference between consumer accidents and product or service incidents. While accidents result in material, psychological or physical damage due to product or service defects, incidents indicate potential risks even if no damage has occurred.

Statistics published by Sinmac provide valuable insights into consumer product safety trends. In 2023, São Paulo accounted for 31% of reported consumer accidents, followed by Paraná (15%) and Rio de Janeiro (13%). Children aged 0-14 accounted for 8% of affected consumers, with the highest impact observed among individuals aged 31-40 (38%). Common injuries included cuts (18%), falls, abrasions (12%) and inhalation/intoxication (5%).

These data will inform regulatory improvements and guide product surveillance strategies. Detailed reports help Inmetro identify non-compliant products and investigate potential regulatory violations.

Karine Murad, Deputy Head of Market Surveillance at Inmetro, highlighted the proactive measures taken following reports of accidents involving a common household item: the household ladder. Incidents of falls and injuries triggered a special inspection initiative called “Safe Home,” demonstrating how consumer reports can catalyze targeted regulatory action.

Consumer awareness is critical to preventing accidents. Regular product maintenance, adherence to safety guidelines and awareness of product life can significantly reduce risks.