What Is the UKCA Marking On Hi Vis Workwear And PPE?
All safety standard approved workwear and PPE must be certified to UKCA (UK Conformity Assessment). This is the new UK product marking for items that previously required the CE mark and is required for many products that are sold within the UK mainland.
The UKCA marking is not recognised within the EU market therefore products sold within the EU will also require the CE marking.
Why Has The UKCA Mark Been Introduced?
Since Brexit, the UK Government has introduced a new standard, the UKCA (UK Conformity Assessed) mark. This is now a mandatory mark on a product showing that is has been approved and conforms with UK legislation.
Prior to Brexit, all PPE and workwear (including hi vis, arc flash and waterproof) that was sold within the UK was marked with the CE symbol. This has now been replaced with the UKCA symbol which is used for goods being placed on the market in Great Britain. If an item previously had the CE symbol, it will now either feature the UKCA marking only or both the UKCA and CE marking together. This depends on what countries the product will be sold in.
Why Is The UKCA Marking Only Used In Great Britain (mainland UK)?
The certification of products sold is Northern Ireland differs to the rest of the UK (British mainland). Since the 1st January 2021, PPE sold in Northern Ireland can be stamped with either the CE mark (CE certification), or with CE + UKNI marking (UKCA certification).
Is The CE Marked PPE No Longer Valid In The UK?
Initially there was a deadline of the 1st Jan 2022 and after this date no new CE marked products were allowed to be sold in the British market unless they were UKCA approved. This date has now been extended until the 31st December 2024. All products which were available to purchase prior to 31st December 2024 can still be sold but must be assessed by UKCA and the UKCA mark must be added to the product and packaging.
At present both the CE and UKCA markings apply to the same standards. Their meanings may differ in the future if the EU or UK change their rules, but for now, the same safety and quality standards still apply.
The Importance Of Using Accredited Workwear And PPE
It is of paramount importance that every item of technical workwear and PPE that you purchase is accredited to the relevant EN safety standards eg, EN 20471, EN 20345, EN 388 etc alongside the UKCA marking. UKCA means the product has been approved for sale on the UK mainland while the EN standards confirm that the product meets the required safety standards. For example, this hi vis polo shirt has been accredited to both UKCA and CE and EN 20471. This means it is safe to be sold in the UK and Europe and conforms to the high visibility standards set out in EN 20471. Using fake workwear or PPE is very serious and can result in the product not providing the correct level of protection to the wearer.
Make sure that both the UKCA and EN markings are visible on the item or packaging and that a declaration of conformity is readily available. If you are unsure about the certification of any item of workwear or PPE, please get in touch with Clad Safety. Clad Safety is listed on the BSIF Approved Safety Supplier Scheme and all products sold by us will always be genuine and safe.
Clad Safety work with Procurement Managers, Health and Safety Managers and Buying Teams from large organisations across the Construction, Rail and Utilities sectors. Ensuring you and your team are protected and safe is of vital importance.
If you require any further advice on UKCA and CE markings or purchasing certified PPE, please get in touch on 0800 161 3661 or email us at [email protected].