We don’t usually involve ourselves with market surveillance, but when products appear on the market that are apparently direct copies of Enola Gaye, we look closer.
This document is about the failed batches of ‘copy’ Enola Gaye paint grenades that should have now been removed from the market.
The ‘copy’ Paint Grenades were officially tested by an independent laboratory which is a part of HSE’s science directorate. The results of these tests concurred with the results of our own tests carried out on the apparent duplicates. These are the same tests that, we routinely carry out when batch testing our own products.
In October 2015, we posted a statement on the UKPSF industry Facebook page giving the industry a heads up that they did not conform to CE and were potentially dangerous. The post was quickly removed, we presume as a result of pressure from the companies behind the copies.
The idea of CE and market surveillance is a simple one. A company designs a product, once they are happy with the design and prototype, samples are then sent off for type testing to an approved test house, usually government owned. Type testing will put these samples through various tests to ensure that the product is safe for use, storage and transport.
Once a product has been given CE approval the hard work starts. Mass production of an article is always the most difficult part; making 25 units is easy, however making 25,000 that perform exactly the same and pass CE standards is not so easy and this is where market surveillance is necessary.
Before batches of product can be released onto the market, samples from each batch have to be tested. This can be done either by the company themselves if they are authorised to do so or batches need to be tested at source by an approved test house. Once the HSE had official evidence that the copy paint grenades had failed CE they gave the company a choice to resolve the issues. Of the choices given, the company chose to remove the products from the market at this present time.
To give you an idea of the similarity of the “copy” design to our original paint grenade please see the pictures below. Should you have purchased ‘copy’ versions of our paint grenade a recall is now in place by the importer and their distribution agents about which you should have received instruction directly from them.
Do not confuse this “copy” product with our fully compliant CE, legal and safe to use paint grenade that is in general circulation and available at all good game fields across Europe.
We cannot stop these people copying our paint grenade as we did not take enough early measures to protect our design, but we can ensure that any future batches of these similar designs do not harm your customers. Of course our latest designs are protected and we look forward to bringing you many new products this year as we continue to improve on design and customer satisfaction.
Just like the Paintball and the Airsoft industry we are not invulnerable from the strict hand of the government. This niche facet of the pyrotechnic industry that we have created is a valuable addition to the games we play. The correct use of our pyro in games adds atmosphere, game play and much needed extra revenue to fields. Your game would not be the same without them.
We walk a fine like of keeping ourselves as clean as possible and preventing as much misuse as we can; no trouble, no problem. Ensuring the manufacturers are keeping to the rules is just as important as policing the punters.
Our aim as one of the brand leaders in our field is to grow the pyrotechnic industry into a safe, fun and exciting part of paintball & airsoft worldwide, stemming from an industry that is born in the UK. We do not attack other companies unnecessarily and welcome competition, after all the more businesses involved simply results in better products and wider use.
As a company we represent the industry on European committees trying to ensure that pyrotechnics for paintball and airsoft are allowed in Europe. Currently there are some European countries that wish to ban products like these, we are currently working with the European Commission to resolve the issues. We do not just work to design and sell products, we also work to preserve the use of pyrotechnics at your fields and events.
Should you have any questions relating to this article or products that you may deem to be copies of ours please do not hesitate to get in touch via the usual Channels.
The above picture shows only the shell design without caps that usually displays the branding.
Because the shell that we originally designed has been compromised and to avoid confusion we have an updated shell design that will be released later this spring. If you are unsure, all our properly-tested and safe current stock carries the Enola Gaye logo on the top of the shell.