CPSIA and Product Safety News Roundup
The big news this week was the passage of H.R. 2715 on Monday by both houses of Congress. The bill, which allows the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to exercise more discretion regarding the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA), is a common-sense amendment to a law that's been a thorn in the side of business for years. Passed by an overwhelming majority in the House and voice vote in the Senate, there's no reason to think President Obama won't sign it when it comes to his desk.
The bill will do a lot of things to help businesses, like creating "functional purpose exemptions" and allowing the sale of products manufactured before the 100 parts-per-million lead limit goes into effect next Sunday, August 14. You can download a PDF of the entire bill and review it for yourself at the House Energy and Commerce Committee's website. It's worth reading and will give you a better idea of what you, as a distributor, are responsible for regarding the products you sell.
One thing the bill doesn't do is change the permissible lead limit in the substrate of products intended for children 12 and under. In simple terms, this means that the material used to make the product itself, not just the surface coating or imprint, cannot have more than 100 ppm of lead. Any products manufactured on or after August 14 must cannot exceed that limit.
As a frame of reference, the lead limit for these children's products is currently 300 ppm. The change amounts to a 0.02% difference in the permissible lead content.
Another thing to note is that this upcoming 100 ppm change is not new: it was included in the original CPSIA draft as part of a scheduled decrease in the lead limit, which transitioned from 600 ppm to 100 ppm over three years. The CPSC's vote on July 14 to enforce the 100 ppm lead limit is just that; not the creation of a new law, but a decision to enforce the law as it was originally written.