The role of notified bodies for the certification of VRS
Since 1 July 2013, all vehicle restraint systems for non-temporary use sold within the European Union and which are subject to the provisions of the Construction Products Regulation (CPR) must bear a 'CE Marking', i.e. prove that they comply with the requirement of Annex ZA of the European Standard hEN 1317-5.
As the responsible organisations for the issue of EC Certificate of Constancy of Performance (hereafter CE Certificates), Notified Bodies essentially act as the ‘passport issuers’ for the internal market and as guarantors of quality with the European Union where an appropriate European Directive of Regulation is in force. As such, it is imperative that any appointed or accredited notified body possess sufficient knowledge that is updated at regular intervals when dealing with the certification of vehicle restraint systems.
Since 2011, ERF has become aware of specific practices amongst certain notified bodies that are inconsistent with the provisions of the CPR and which result in undermining firstly the coherence of the internal market for vehicle restraint systems and secondly, could result in unsafe or non-compliant systems being installed within the EU and non-EU countries that may utilise hEN 1317-5.
In response, the ERF working group on Road Restraint Systems has elaborated a position paper is to raise its concern amongst the relevant bodies (European Commission, Member State authorities, Notified Bodies) about the current functioning of the system of notified bodies within Europe with respect to the certification of Vehicle Restraint Systems. Moreover, the paper proposes a set of recommendations which, in the opinion of ERF, could substantially improve the functioning of the system of notified bodies for vehicle restraint systems if implemented.
Contact person: Konstandinos Diamandouros, k.diamandouros(at)erf.be