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USA: Massachusetts Passes Bill to Ban Toxic Flame Retardants

JANUARY 2021 - HARDLINES, SOFTLINES, TOYS & CHILDREN'S PRODUCTS

The flame retardants bill that protects children, family and firefighters was submitted in Massachusetts years ago, but it did not become a law. By 1 January 2021, the Governor of the State finally signed the bill HB49001 to restrict certain household products (covered products) containing any 11 flame retardants. The law applies to the covered products except for inventory manufactured prior to 31 December 2021.

This legislation prohibits a manufacturer or retailer to sell, offer, or manufacture for sale, distribute in commerce or import the covered products which contain any 11 flame retardants exceeding the total weight of 1000 ppm into Massachusetts. It also requires manufacturers to provide notice to retailers or other persons that sell such covered products no later than 1 July 2021. A brief summary of the legislation can be found in Table A. 

A manufacturer or retailer who violates the legislation is subject to the civil penalty. However, the civil penalty can be waived if the manufacturer or retailer carries out due diligence and promptly corrects any non-compliance after discovery of the violation.
 
Table A. Summary of the HB4900

Parameter  Details

Scope

Covered products mean bedding including mattress, pillows, sleeping bags, carpeting e.g. floor covering, children’s products (for aged of 12 years or under), residential upholstered furniture or window treatment e.g. curtain materials, blinds.

Limit

List of restricted flame retardants:

  • Tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl)phosphate (TDCPP);
  • Tris(2-chloroethyl)phosphate (TCEP);
  • Antimony trioxide;
  • Hexabromocyclododecane (HBCD);
  • Bis(2-Ethylhexyl)-3,4,5,6- tetrabromophthalate (TBPH);
  • 2-EthylhexYl-2,3,4,5-tetrabromobenzoate (TBB);
  • Chlorinated paraffins;
  • Tris (1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TCPP);
  • PentaBDE;
  • OctaBDE;
  • Tetrabromobisphenol A (TBBPA)

≤ 1000 ppm for any component parts

Exemption

  • Motor vehicles, watercraft, aircraft, all-terrain vehicles, off-highway motorcycles or any component parts; 
  • the sale or purchase of any previously-owned product containing a chemical flame retardant prohibited;
  • electronic devices;
  • electronic components of covered products;
  • inventory which manufactured before 31 December 2021;
  • covered products that contains prohibited flame retardants because of the use of recycled materials 

[1]  HB 4900

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