Vol. 1296 | 21 Mar 2022

On February 3, 2022, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPR) for clothing storage units (CSUs) to address the risks of death and injury, particularly for children, associated with clothing storage units tipping over.

The proposed rule would establish a new consumer product safety standard for the CSUs in the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), by adding a new part, 16 CFR 1261. This new section would contain minimum stability and labeling (including hangtag) requirements for CSUs. The proposed rule would also require manufacturers to test to the 16 CFR 1261 requirements at a CPSC accepted third-party laboratory for Certification per rule 16 CFR 1110.

16 CFR 1261 defines Clothing Storage Units as a freestanding furniture item, with drawer(s) and/or door(s), that may be reasonably expected to be used for storing clothing, that is greater than or equal to 27 inches in height, and with a total functional volume of the closed storage greater than 1.3 cubic feet and greater than the sum of the total functional volume of the open storage and the total volume of the open space. Common names for clothing storage units include, but are not limited to: Chests, bureaus, dressers, armoires, wardrobes, chests of drawers, drawer chests, chifforobes, and door chests. Whether a product is a clothing storage unit depends on whether it meets this definition. Some products that generally do not meet the criteria in this definition and, therefore, likely are not considered clothing storage units are: Shelving units, office furniture, dining room furniture, laundry hampers, built- in closets, and single-compartment closed rigid boxes (storage chests).

Key requirements of the 16 CFR 1261 are:

  • § 1261.3 - Requirements for interlocks
    • Interlocks must be pre-installed and automatically engage if present.
  • § 1261.4 - Requirements for stability
    • Specifies testing to determine the tip-over moment and the threshold moment of a CSU.
    • Requires that the tip-over moment exceeds the threshold moment.
  • § 1261.5 - Requirements for marking and labeling
    • Requires a warning label that meets the size, content, symbol, formatting, location and permanency requirements specified in the regulation which include, by reference, the requirements of ASTM F2057-19 section 7.3, 8.2.2 and 8.2.3
    • Requires an identification label that meets the size content, formatting, location and permanency requirements specified in the regulation which include, by reference, the requirements of ASTM F2057-19 section 7.3
  • § 1261.6 – Requirements to provide performance and technical data by labeling
    • Requires a performance hangtag that contains performance and technical data for the CSU. The hangtag must meet the size, content, formatting, placement, and attachment requirements specified by the regulation.

The CPSC is accepting comments on this proposed rule until April 19, 2022.

The proposed rule can be viewed at: https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2022-02-03/pdf/2022-01689.pdf

For questions, please contact Matthew Nudell (matthew.nudell@intertek.com, +1 716-225-9006) or Dr. Pratik Ichhaporia (pratik.ichhaporia@intertek.com, +1 847 212 8273)


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