WorkSafe produces guidance for the electricity industry on specific issues relating to products as they are brought to our attention. This information includes product specific installation requirements, technical information, highlighted safety issues and products that have been prohibited.

Prohibited products

Where we consider on reasonable grounds that a product is unsafe, the product can be prohibited under regulation 87 - Prohibitions relating to fittings and appliances.(external link)

View the list of electrical products that have been prohibited. 

Guides on specific products

Guidance given by us on specific electrical products.

Compact fluorescent lamps

This information is intended to provide guidance to suppliers (including importers, distributors and retailers) on the principal regulatory requirements applying to the importation and sale of compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs).

In addition to being fit for purpose and meeting any supplier claims for performance, CFLs sold in New Zealand are required to comply with four specific technical regulatory requirements in respect to:

  • Electrical safety
  • Electro-Magnetic Compatibility – EMC
  • Harmonic emission, and
  • Energy efficiency

While these requirements are generally based on international guidelines, they have critical differences in some areas with the result that products assessed for other markets may fall short of being suitable for use in New Zealand. Verification of compliance with these requirements, prior to sale, is essential to avoid prosecution or mandatory product recalls.

CFL - Electrical Safety

The electrical safety of Ccompact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) is assessed by compliance with AS/NZS 60968. While this Standard is based on IEC 60968 it contains additional fire resistance requirements which must also be met.

CFLs not in compliance with these additional requirements are considered to be unsafe and consequently the sale of such CFLs constitutes an offence. IEC 60968 and EU 60968 are both considered inadequate for assessing safety in New Zealand. And, as with most Electrical and Electronic products sold in New Zealand, the CE marking has no recognised validity.

To be recognised, testing must be carried out in a testing facility accredited by IANZ or NATA, or a laboratory accredited under a recognised MRA.

CFLs are considered to be a medium risk electrical item, and the safety of end of life failure is of particular importance.

CFL - Electro Magnetic Compatibility (EMC)

The Electro Magnetic Compatibility (EMC) compliance of compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) is determined by compliance with CISPR 15.

CFLs are considered to be a medium EMC risk device and therefore must be marked with the C-tick or RCM. The supplier's identification must be the subject of a Supplier Declaration of Conformity (SDoC) for EMC compliance and must be covered by a compliant test report, preferably from an IANZ, or NATA accredited testing laboratory, or a laboratory accredited under a recognised Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRAs).

The supplier must have a supplier code number, and must have completed an SDoC for the EMC compliance of the CFLs they supply.

It is an offence to supply (sell), at any point in a supply chain, a CFL not bearing compliance markings, or not complying with recognised Standards, or not the subject of an SDoC (reference Electricity (Safety) Regulations 2010 regulation 83(external link).)

CFL - Language markings, warnings, voltage and frequency

Markings, instructions, warnings and labels must be in English and as a minimum, in compliance with the applicable Standards. Failure to provide adequate markings, instructions, warnings and labels could result in prosecutions under the applicable legislation.

All testing must be carried to verify compliance at New Zealand's nominal supply voltage and frequency - 230 Volts 50 Hz.

Failure to provide suitable warnings may result in the CFLs being determined to be unsafe, hazardous, or not "fit for purpose", with resulting prosecutions, prohibitions on sale or use, and/or mandatory recalls.

Warnings shall be provided in particular relating to limitations of any CFLs to operate safely or correctly:

  • on circuits controlled by dimmers, or two way switching, in touch lamps, with photocells or with electronic timers; or
  • where exposed to water; or
  • in cold environments; or
  • in recessed (downlight) fittings, and, noting that New Zealand allows the use of festoon lighting systems outdoors, limitations on operation where exposed to weather.

CFL – Recommendations

It is strongly recommended that suppliers ensure that manufacturers are aware of the technical requirements applying to compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) made for sale in the New Zealand market and in particular the need to comply with New Zealand's language, marking, fire resistance and harmonic variations.

In addition, for supplies originating from China, it is recommended that all purchasing documentation contains details of all applicable Standards and specifications to ensure that China’s export compliance verification processes can be applied correctly. This is a recommendation for all electrical and electronic equipment supplied from China.

Copies of relevant Standards are available from the Standards New Zealand website.(external link)