Biocides: Find the right enforcement authority

Incident or concern Occurred in Report to
People – where someone has carried out a biocidal treatment in your home as part of their work, for example, a professional pest controller Great Britain
Northern Ireland
People – where someone has carried out a biocidal treatment in your home not as part of their work, for example, yourself or another member of the general public Great Britain
Northern Ireland
People – other than the scenarios described above Great Britain Depends on the type of place involved
Northern Ireland Depends on the type of place involved
Animals, including wildlife, livestock and pets/companion animals United Kingdom
The environment England
Wales
 Scotland
Northern Ireland
Rail networks United Kingdom
Authorisation or approval
concern that a product does not have the necessary authorisation or approval for example
Great Britain
Northern Ireland
Trade-to-trade sale
wholesale supply
Great Britain
Northern Ireland
Retail sale, including online and in physical stores Great Britain
Northern Ireland
Advertisement
online, newspapers/magazines etc
Great Britain
Northern Ireland

If you're still not sure which authority you should report to, don't worry! All of the authorities work together, so we will make sure your report gets to the right place.

Other ways the authorities work together include:

Enforcement laws

The responsibilities of the different authorities described in the table above come from general health and safety law working in combination with more specific enforcement laws for COPR, GB BPR and EU BPR.

General health and safety law

GB BPR specific law

The following laws amend the BPC Regs to enable them to operate effectively as part of GB BPR:

EU BPR specific law

COPR specific law

These laws also define a number of offences and the powers that the authorities may use. Find out more about offences and powers.

Schemes and activities

HSE also runs a number of schemes and activities focussed on the effects of the use of biocidal products in particular areas.

Wildlife Incident Investigation Scheme (WIIS)

The Wildlife Incident Investigation Scheme (WIIS) investigates the death and illness of wildlife, livestock, pets (usually cats and dogs) and beneficial invertebrates (usually honey bees, bumble bees and earthworms) that are suspected to be caused by poisoning from biocides (or pesticides).

WIIS is primarily a monitoring tool that provides additional information to HSE, which may prompt the reassessment of authorised products to prevent further incidents. However, enforcement action may also be taken where there is clear evidence of a breach of the law.

Adverse effects reporting

Action for approval/authorisation holders

COPR, GB BPR and EU BPR require product approval and authorisation holders to report new information about products and active substances that may affect their approval or authorisation. You should report to HSE without delay if you become aware of:

You should include as much information as possible in your reports, including:

The information reported to HSE may prompt the reassessment of authorised products to prevent further incidents. However, enforcement action may also be taken where there is clear evidence of a breach of the law.

To ensure that HSE is receiving this information, we conduct an annual survey where approval/authorisation holders are required to tell us about any information they have received concerning the adverse effects described above.

Please note: this does not mean you should wait for us to write to you! If you have received information concerning adverse effects, you must tell us without delay.

The results of the survey are compiled into an anonymous report – approval/authorisation holders and products will not be identified. For the latest report, or reports from previous years, please contact us.

Updated 2022-03-24