Age restricted products & solvent abuse – advice for all
The law makes the selling of age restricted products to those under age a criminal offence, with various penalties.
Retailers should be clear how the law and safeguarding responsibilities apply to them. Such products include:
|Legal minimum age|
|Videos, DVDs and computer games (varies with|
|Lottery tickets and scratch cards||16|
|Lighter refills containing Butane||18|
|Solvents and volatile substances||18|
|Knives and offensive weapons||18|
|Aerosol paint containers||16|
- Crossbows, air weapons, etc – the law in this area is complex so you should seek specialist advice if you are considering registering as a firearms dealer or stocking these products for sale, supply or hire.
- Online sales of age-restricted products – selling age-restricted products via the internet presents particular issues and retailers must have effective systems in place for preventing sales to prospective customers who are underage.
- Sunbeds – It is an offence for anyone carrying out a sunbed business to allow anyone under 18 to use a sunbed.
For more information on all of these products visit Trading Standards Manchester who aim to support businesses by raising awareness and promoting good practice and operate a policy of ‘prevention through advice’ by providing guidance to businesses on legislative requirements and associated best practice in an attempt to maximise the level of compliance with the law.
There is further useful information provided by the Manchester City Council Licensing Unit on the City council’s website www.manchester.gov.uk
- Children and Young Persons Act 1933
- Video Recordings Act 1984
- Criminal Justice Act 1988
- Children and Young Persons (Protection From Tobacco) Act 1991
- National Lottery etc Act 1993
- National Lottery Regulations 1994
- Offensive Weapons Act 1996
- Cigarette Lighter Refill (Safety) Regulations 1999
- Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003
- Licensing Act 2003
- Fireworks Regulations 2004
- Gambling Act 2005
- Violent Crime Reduction Act 2006
- Pyrotechnic Articles (Safety) Regulations 2015
- Psychoactive Substances Act 2016
Sales of Intoxicating Substances (Solvents)
It is an offence to supply or offer to supply any intoxicating substances to a person under the age of 18 where the shopkeeper may reasonably believe that the product will be used for intoxication.
It is also an offence to supply butane gas, such as a cigarette lighter refills containing butane, to any person under the age of 18. This is irrespective to whether the seller knew or suspected it was likely to be abused.
The penalty for breaking this law or the Intoxicating Substances (Supply) Act 1985 is a maximum fine of £5000 or up to 6 months in prison or both. Products include:
- Butane gas cigarette lighter refills
- Liquefied domestic gas
- Other aerosols
- Solvent based adhesives
- Some typewriter correction fluids
- Deodorant aerosols
- Pain relief sprays
- Certain paints, paint thinners and remover
- Aerosol air fresheners
- Dry-cleaning agent
- Petrol Lighter fuel
- Nail varnish and varnish remover
- Shoe and metal polish
- Plaster remover.