It’s heartbreaking to think that someone lost their life because of a faulty piece of electrical equipment as was the case recently with a young mother’s apparent electrocution has been attributed to a faulty power adaptor for her phone.  The tragedy is a stark reminder why market stalls are just not the place to buy electrical equipment.

Even as a kid I can remember visiting the big market locations and seeing loads of “Air Jordan” or “Nike” shirts or track-suit pants and even shoes.  It didn’t take me long to realise they were cheap because they were knock-offs.  They were not the genuine article – Nike had no involvement in making them – and while that didn’t bother me – I didn’t care how long the shirt would last, it’s an important reminder of just why some stuff should just be avoided.

Those shirts – the “non genuine” ones, they probably use inferior dyes, or prints, stitching that’s less than the standard Nike might expect and use, and after a few months you’ll notice them fading or the logos coming off.

But who cares? It looked good for a while didn’t it.

The problem with electronics is the danger that can come from a faulty product.  When a cheap charger uses lower grade plastics, or electrical circuitry it can fail.  If the whole thing melts or short circuits you could damage your device or risk personal injury or death.  There’s no mucking around here.

The Australian Electrical Regulatory Authority Council, “All Level 1, 2 or 3 electrical equipment offered for sale in Australia and New Zealand by Responsible Suppliers must be marked with the Regulatory Compliance Mark (RCM)” as shown here:


That’s what you have to look for.

Now to complicate things, of course, the idiots running factories making these cheap knock-offs might just throw this logo on their products right?  That’s true.  But the next hint is in the price, and the availability.

If you’re shopping at the markets for chargers and cables – don’t.

If it’s $5, or $10 – don’t.

Quality production and quality materials come at a price.

Take care, use caution – buy the name brands and buy from the big retailers – for your own safety let alone anyone else who might use the charger – shop smart.