The NRCS – Who, What and Why?
As an importer and distributor of electrical appliances to the South African market, Hurricane Dry’s products, mainly our hand dryers and heaters, must seek an Approved Letter of Authority (LOA) from the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS). Without this we would be putting ourselves, as a small business owner, and the South African consumer at risk.
Let me explain more…
Who are they?
The NRCS is part of the Department of Trade and Industry. It was established in 2008 to protect human health and safety, to preserve the environment and to ensure fair trade within South Africa.
What do they do?
The goal of the NRCS is to ensure that products sold within South Africa meet internationally accepted standards, as agreed by the World Trade Organisation, (WTO). This allows businesses to compete on a level playing field, as well as protecting the safety interests of the South African consumer.
In Sept 2018, NRCS officers destroyed thousands of non-compliant products in Gauteng. These included paraffin-stoves, heaters, televisions and various other household and electrical items. Most of these products had been manufactured/imported illegally and did not comply with NRCS guidelines. One of the NRCS’s goals is to educate consumers to the importance of purchasing compliant products, rather than what is cheapest, as safety cannot be guaranteed with such items.
How does this all affect a small business owner like Hurricane Dry?
If a small business owner is selling an imported electrical product e.g. a Vortice Thermologika infrared wall heater, they must apply for a LOA. If they don’t have one, the business owner can be held responsible if the product becomes faulty and causes any damage or harm to others. Company insurance could potentially become invalid without a LOA from the NRCS, and the small business owner could subsequently be held liable for any legal fees, fines and compensation.
It is not only the seller/distributer that is at risk. The consumer that bought the appliance could also feel the knock-on-effect of the product not having a LOA. They could also be held liable for any damage or harm that the appliance caused to others. Now can you see how important it is?
That’s why the South African NRCS exists, to protect everyone, consumer and businesses alike.
At Hurricane Dry, customer service, customer safety and quality of products are priority. We hold an Approved Letter of Authority from the NRCS for our imported heaters, hand dryers and soap dispensers. We know the potential risk for all parties of not having a LOA, and would not feel comfortable doing business in South Africa without it.