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CBP Targets, Intercepts Illegally Imported HID Headlamps

Release Date: 
February 23, 2016

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico - U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), working closely with the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), seized last Wednesday, a shipment of 380 imported High Intensity Discharge (HID) conversion kits.  The domestic value of the shipment was approximately $7,227.

HID kits when installed can pose glare hazards to other drivers.

HID kits when installed can pose glare hazards to other drivers.

"Ensuring the safety of imported products is a top priority for CBP," said Edward Ryan, Assistant Director of Trade for Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. "The concerted targeting efforts and vigilance of CBP officers and import specialists at our ports of entry will help ensure that unsafe products from overseas markets do not reach our roadways." 

CBP officers seized the shipment following the determination that the equipment failed to meet DOT requirements that headlamp replaceable light sources be marked with the light source type, the light source manufacturer's name or trademark, and the DOT symbol indicating certification of compliance with governing regulations

The shipment, arriving via the ocean cargo environment, from China had been targeted by CBP because of the potential safety threat to the American public. 

Automotive headlamps, and replacement light sources and ballasts for those lamps, are regulated by DOT's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. HID conversion kits are custom light sources and ballasts manufactured to be installed into headlamps that were not designed to use them. When these kits are installed, they pose potential glare hazards to other roadway users.  The street value for HID conversion kits can run anywhere from $150 to $500 per kit.

In the last month, San Juan Field Operations has seized more than a dozen shipments of HID conversion kits and components for violating DOT regulations, equaling a total combined domestic value of approximately $100,000.  

CBP and DOT work in close collaboration to help protect public safety by examining, sampling and testing imported products that may be hazardous.

Last modified: 
February 9, 2017