U.S. – CPSC Proposes 16 CFR 1253 to Exempt Unfinished Manufactured Fibers from CPSIA Phthalates and ASTM F963 Heavy Elements Testing Requirements

Vol. 1109 | October 15, 2019

On October 9, 2019, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) to promulgate 16 CFR 1253 to exempt certain unfinished manufactured fibers from the 16 CFR 1307 phthalate content requirement and the ASTM F963 soluble elements testing requirements, to provide manufacturers relief from third-party testing requirements. The effective date is proposed to be 30 days from the publication of the rule once finalized.

The CPSC worked with the Toxicology Excellence for Risk Assessment (TERA), a contractor, to conduct literature review on the production of certain undyed manufactured fibers to evaluate whether they contain any of the heavy elements restricted by ASTM F963 and 16 CFR 1250, as well as any of the phthalates restricted by 16 CFR 1307.

Following this study, the notice of proposed rulemaking was published to exempt the accessible component parts of toys and child care articles from the following testing requirements for the specified unfinished manufactured fibers:

  • ASTM F963 soluble elements for children’s toys made from:
    • Nylon
    • Polyurethane (Spandex)
    • Viscose rayon
    • Acrylic
    • Modacrylic
    • Natural rubber latex
  • Phthalate content per 16 CFR 1307 for children’s toys and child care articles made from:
    • Polyester (polyethylene terephthalate, PET)
    • Nylon
    • Polyurethane (Spandex)
    • Viscose rayon
    • Acrylic
    • Modacrylic
    • Natural rubber latex

The commission defines Unfinished Manufactured Fibers in the proposed rule as “one that has no chemical additives beyond those required to manufacture the fiber,” such that the unfinished manufactured fiber is free of any chemical additives added to impart color or other desirable properties, such as flame retardancy.

It should be noted that for accessible component parts of children’s toys and child care articles subject to sections 106 and 108 of the CPSIA, compliance to the specified content limits is always required, irrespective of any testing exemptions.

Deadline for public comment on the proposed rule is December 23, 2019.

The CPSC is requesting comments on:

  • Data or examples indicating the presence of ASTM F963 heavy elements or phthalates in the manufactured fibers identified
  • Any information supporting or refuting the claim that antimony will not be present in concentrations greater than the ASTM F963 specified limits in polyester (PET) fiber in an unfinished state without colorants
  • Any data or examples that the colorants or other finishes used for the manufactured fibers identified in the proposed rule never contain the ASTM F963 elements or prohibited phthalates at levels that are not compliant
  • Available data or examples about the use of recycled content in the manufactured fibers identified in the proposed rule containing the ASTM F963 elements or prohibited phthalates at levels that are not compliant
  • In addition to the manufactured fibers within scope of this study, if there are other manufactured fibers widely used in children's toys and childcare articles that have not been identified in the proposed rule that do not, and will not contain the ASTM F963 elements or prohibited phthalates

The proposed rule can be reviewed at: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2019-10-09/pdf/2019-21517.pdf

For questions, please contact Laxmi Ravikumar (laxmi.ravikumar@intertek.com, +1- 630-209-9265) or Dr. Pratik Ichhaporia (pratik.ichhaporia@intertek.com, +1-847-212-8273).

 

 

Related topics: 2019 | Toys and Childrens Products