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Flares in used Japanese motor vehicles are prohibited imports


1 Jul 2007

All used motor vehicles in Japan contain a "road breakdown flare". While these flares are required in Japan they may NOT be imported into New Zealand and are considered a prohibited import. 

Why can't road-marking flares be imported into New Zealand?

Road breakdown flares are classified as explosives under the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996 (HSNO Act) and require approval from the Environmental Risk Management Authority (ERMA) to be imported into New Zealand.
Explosives, including flares, which are imported without approval are prohibited imports under the Customs and Excise Act 1996 and may be seized by Customs.
As the flares are not labeled with English warnings and instructions on their use, they do not comply with one of the requirements of the HSNO Act. As these flares may present a danger to New Zealanders, ERMA will not give approval for them to be imported into this country.

What should importers of used Japanese motor vehicles do?

It is important that importers ask their agents in Japan to remove the flares before the vehicles are shipped to New Zealand.
Removal in Japan will assist in preventing any possible delays in clearance of vehicles on their arrival in New Zealand and any decision that Customs may take to prosecute importers of vehicles containing these flares.

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