The German product safety act (Produktsicherheitsgesetz - ProdSG) shall apply whenever products are made available on the market, exhibited on the market or used for the first time in the context of a commercial activity. With exception this Act shall also apply to the erection and the operation of installations subject to mandatory inspection, which are used for commercial or economic purposes or which may put employees at risk.
Technical working equipment can bear the GS mark if type tests are conducted by an authorised independent body and confirmed that the product conforms to the current safety and health requirements of the Federal Republic of Germany and the test and certification body conducts inspections to assure that only the products that correspond to the type are brought onto the market (production monitoring). It is the latter requirement that distinguishes the GS certificate from a type-test certificate in accordance with the EU machinery directive, which does not require production monitoring. It is thus possible to apply the GS mark also to machines that are subject to the machinery directive, and thus to the ninth ordinance of the ProdSG, if an appropriate type test was conducted.
IFA is an independent body authorised in the framework of the product safety act. IFA heads the German circle on the exchange of experience on machines (EK9) of the accredited GS test bodies in Germany.
The competence of the IFA test body derives from the authorization issued by the ZLS (the Federal States' Central Office for Safety Technology) and the accreditations certified by the DAkkS, Germany's national accreditation body.
(all in German only)