December 18, 2009
The Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is not quite ready to begin mandated testing and certification of many regulated children's products. As a result, the Commission voted unanimously today to extend a "stay of enforcement" for another year.
While enforcement of specific CPSC testing requirements has been stayed, the products must still comply with all applicable rules and bans, the Commission said.
Categories covered by the stay of enforcement include children's toys and child care articles with banned phthalates, children's toys subject to ASTM's F-963 toy safety standard, caps and toy guns, clacker balls, baby walkers, bath seats, other durable infant products, electrically-operated toys, youth all-terrain vehicles, youth mattresses, children's bicycles, carpets and rugs, vinyl plastic film and children's sleepwear.
The stay of enforcement will remain in effect for these children's products while CPSC continues to work toward recognizing labs. At present, not enough labs have been certified.
Independent third party testing and certification will only be required for these categories of children's products 90 days after the CPSC publishes the laboratory accreditation requirements for any individual category in the Federal Register.
At the same time, the CPSC voted 4-1 to extend the stay on certification and third party testing for children's products subject to lead content limits until February 10, 2011. Under this decision, products must still meet the 300 ppm lead limit now, but certification and third party testing to show compliance will be required for all childrens products manufactured after February 10, 2011. A childrens product is one that is primarily intended for children 12 and younger.
Meanwhile, the stay will end on schedule, on February 10, 2010, for four children's products: bicycle helmets, bunk beds, infant rattles and dive sticks. These children's products, manufactured after February 10, 2010, will be required to have certification based on independent third party testing. The testing must be conducted by a laboratory recognized by CPSC.
The Commission left unchanged the current independent third party testing and certification required for all children's products subject to the following consumer product safety rules:
• The ban on lead in paint and other surface coatings
• The standards for full-size and non full-size cribs and pacifiers
• The ban on small parts
• The limits on lead content of metal components of children's jewelry
Under the regulations, different rules apply to non-children's products. Domestic manufacturers and importers are not required to test non-children's products using an independent third party lab. However, they must certify that non-children's products comply with applicable CPSC regulations by issuing a general certificate of conformity (GCC)based on a reasonable testing program.
The testing was mandated by law after a string of highly publicized toy recalls, many involving lead paint.
A GCC will be required for some non-children's products manufactured after February 10, 2010. These products include architectural glazing materials, ATVs, adult bunk beds, candles with metal wicks, CB antennas, contact adhesives, cigarette lighters, multi-purpose lighters, matchbooks, garage door openers, portable gas containers, lawn mowers, mattresses, unstable refuse bins, refrigerator door latches, swimming pool slides, products subject to regulations under the Poison Prevention Packaging Act (PPPA), paint and household furniture subject to lead paint regulations.
The stay of enforcement will remain in effect for certain categories of non-children's products including adult bicycles, carpets and rugs, vinyl plastic film and wearing apparel. General certificates of conformity are currently required for pool drain covers.
Additionally, products that require labeling under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act (FHSA) or labeling rules will not require additional certification to those regulations.
The CPSC says that while the stay of enforcement remains in effect for the certification and testing requirements for certain products, all products must comply with the safety standards and bans of the law, including the limits for lead content, lead paint, the ban on certain phthalates and the ASTM F-963 mandatory toy standard.
CPSC Delays Enforcement Of Testing on Kids' Products...