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USA: New federal standards coming for button cell and coin batteries

AUGUST 2022 - ELECTRICALS AND ELECTRONICS, TOYS AND CHILDREN'S PRODUCTS

On 16 August 2022, U.S. President Biden signed the bill H.R. 53131 into Law to protect children and other consumers from the dangers posed by button cell or coin batteries found in everyday household items.

The “Reese’s Law”, which is named after a toddler who died in 2020 after ingesting a button battery, will direct the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) to establish a mandatory standard for button cell or coin batteries as well as consumer products containing such batteries no later than 16 August 2023.

The safety standard must include performance requirements that the button cell or coin battery compartments of a consumer product containing batteries be secured to prevent access by children that are six years of age or younger during reasonably foreseeable use or misuse conditions. The standard must set warning label requirements to be included on the packaging of button cell or coin batteries as well as on the consumer products containing batteries in any visible forms when practical.

Starting 12 February 2023, the batteries if sold separately or included separately with a product must comply with federal child-resistant packaging regulations provided in 16 CFR Part 1700.15, as determined through testing in accordance with the method described in 16 CFR Part 1700.20, or another test method for button cell or coin battery packaging specified by the CPSC.

The Law provides the new standards will not apply to any toy that complies with the battery accessibility and labeling requirements of 16 CFR Part 1250, while the child-resistant packaging requirements will not apply to button cell or coin batteries that are in compliance with the marking and packaging provisions of the ANSI Safety Standard for Portable Lithium Primary Cells and Batteries (ANSI C18.3M).

 

[1]  H.R. 5313

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