During his speech on post-May 11, Edouard Philippe announced to parliamentarians on April 28 that it will be “preferable in many circumstances, to wear a mask” and called on “all companies” to equip their employees . The Prime Minister also announced their obligation in public transport.
With the explosion in demand, offers – and scams – are increasing on the internet. L'Usine Nouvelle offers you some tips to avoid traps.
What are the most common scams?
The most frequent field trips concern “excessive prices or fanciful tariff claims”, explains François Carlier, director of cabinet within the national association of consumers CLCV (Consumption Housing Framework of Life). “Too little filtering masks are circulating too”, he continues. Remember that the minimum filtration for a category 2 general public mask (i.e. those recommended for people who are not in direct contact with the public or employees) is 70% of particles of 3 microns .
“There is no black market, but rather a very foggy gray market, says François Carlier. People manage as best they can, between the masks made by themselves and those that we buy on the internet. The standardization of products by the establishment of a logo assigned by the State from May 4 will sanitize the market, but when we ask the Secretary of State for the Economy if the masks that do not include not or that you do yourself can be used in public transport, it responds positively. I think the government is afraid of not having enough masks under the logo. ”
Who to turn to?
Several initiatives launched by the public authorities make it possible to sort among suppliers.
The French Association for Standardization (AFNOR) launched on April 14 a digital platform called “solidarity masks” to connect mask manufacturers (artisans, industrialists and individuals) and employers wishing to equip their employees. The “barrier masks” are referenced therein which comply with the specifications drawn up by AFNOR (“AFNOR Spec – Barrier masks”) in collaboration with 150 experts (textile manufacturers, health professionals, inspection bodies, etc.).
The platform supports the AFNOR initiative called “I make my barrier mask”, which allows you to download a manual for making masks for the general public. “Most of the users are individuals,” said its director general Olivier Peyrat during a press conference, announcing that AFNOR had recorded more than a million downloads by April 27.
These masks can be used in public space or in the professional environment (except health). “The mask suppliers will also undertake to offer them free of charge, or at cost price”, specifies AFNOR on its site. As of April 16, 800 suppliers were listed and more than 20,000 applicants.
Another initiative, the StopCovid19.fr portal allows companies to obtain supplies from national producers for an order of at least 5,000 masks. Launched by the French company Mirakl, specializing in marketplace solutions, with the support of the General Directorate of Business (DGE) and the Ministry of the Economy, it has enabled 1,390,000 masks to be already ordered .
Otherwise, a list of mask producing companies that have obtained certification from the DGA (General Directorate of Armaments) with their contact details is regularly updated on the website of the Ministry of the Economy. To date, 390 models created by 290 French companies have successfully passed the tests.
How to ensure the reliability of the masks?
The Secretary of State for the Economy, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, outlined on April 27 the outlines of an answer to the question of the reliability of the masks put on the market. The State will develop a logo to distinguish the various masks for the general public. Only models tested and validated by the DGA will be able to include it. Information relating to the number of washes, the instructions for use, the category of the mask (category 1: 90% filtration of particles less than three microns, category 2: 70%) and the instructions for use should be by elsewhere informed.
Bureau Veritas, a global group of expertise and certification, offers companies to verify the certificate of the masks they buy. “We have made available to our customers experts who can analyze the certificates, before the customer places his order and spends his money, to ensure that he buys quality and approved masks”, explains Jacques Pommeraud, General Manager France and Africa of Bureau Veritas.
The Professional Organization for the Prevention of Building and Public Works (OPBTP) puts online a series of recommendations to avoid scams. Several points must be checked when ordering a mask: a user manual or technical sheet must accompany the product and state its reference, verified performance and precise use. The CE marking for masks must be present on the packaging as well as on the product. All the checks and instructions for use of the different types of masks are referenced at this address.