THURROCK Council leader, Cllr Rob Gledhill, joined members at their new DP World depot on Monday 8 August to see the team in action helping to prevent dangerous goods from entering the country.
Cllr Gledhill said: “It is impossible to overestimate the important work this team does in preventing potentially dangerous goods from getting into the hands of shoppers. Last year they prevented over 64,000 unsafe items from entering through the borough’s ports, as well as stopping 1.8 million items which did not comply with UK labelling rules or have the proper safety certificates.
“Overall last year this team alone saved the UK economy £65 million by preventing dangerous and non-compliant goods from reaching the marketplace.
“This new depot means they have access to inspect goods more quickly as they arrive and before they make their way to wherever they are destined for. It is an excellent example of how close working between the ports and Thurrock Council is protecting shops and consumers in Thurrock and far beyond.
“This week the team stopped a shipment of jewellery, for a large online retailer, which contained thousands of times the permitted levels of cadmium and lead and a shipment of baby cologne that did not have any of the proper paperwork, details of ingredients and allergens and had not been tested to ensure its safety. The fact that someone would put children at risk by shipping product that no one knows what it contains is shocking, but equally the fact that Thurrock Council officers spotted this and stopped it from entering the marketplace shows we will do all we can to protect residents in Thurrock and across the whole country.
“With Thurrock being the ports capital of the U.K, the work this team carries out will do nothing but increase. It was great to get an opportunity to see how important their work is and I would like to thank the ports, Border Force and other agencies that work closely with them keeping us safe.
“However, as successful as they are, with over 40 million tonnes of goods coming in to Thurrock’s ports from all over the world some issues will not be detected and these goods will be found on sale in shops, online and in markets. If residents see suspected unsafe goods for sale then they should report them to Trading Standards on 0808 223 1133.”