WASHINGTON, May 21 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has approved a new federal safety standard for infant bath seats. The vote on the final rule was 5-0.
The federal standard for infant bath seats is the first mandatory standard issued by CPSC as required under the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) for a range of infant and toddler durable products.
The new federal requirements for infant bath seats enhance the current ASTM voluntary standard by adding stricter stability requirements to prevent the bath seat from tipping over, tighter leg opening requirements to prevent children from slipping through the leg openings and a larger permanent warning label alerting parents and caregivers that bath seats are not safety devices and that infants should never be left unattended in a bath seat. The federal standard incorporates current voluntary standard provisions requiring latching and locking mechanisms, and compliance with CPSC’s standards for sharp points and edges, small parts, and lead in paint.
Infant bath seats are used in a sink or tub to provide back and front support to a seated infant while he or she is being bathed. They are marketed for use with infants between five and 10 months of age.
From 1983 through November 2009, there were 174 reported deaths involving bath seats and 300 reported non-fatal bath seat incidents. Many of the deaths and incidents involve babies left unattended while bathing.
Young children can drown quickly, even in small amounts of water. Never leave a child alone, even for a moment, near any water. Always keep a young child within arm’s reach in a bathtub. And never leave a baby or toddler in a bathtub under the care of another young child.
Information gathered by CPSC staff indicates that no baby bath seat currently on the market complies with the new mandatory standard.
The final rule on infant bath seats goes into effect six months after publication in the Federal Register. Bath seats manufactured or imported on or after that date will be required to meet the new mandatory standard.
CPSC staff is working to develop federal standards for nearly 20 other durable juvenile products, including bassinets, cribs, and infant walkers.
Statements from CPSC Commissioners on the new federal safety standard for infant bath seats: Commissioner Thomas H. Moore (pdf) (http://www.cpsc.gov/pr/moore05192010.pdf) and Commissioner Anne M. Northup (pdf) (http://www.cpsc.gov/pr/northup05192010.pdf)
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of serious injury or death from more than 15,000 types of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $800 billion annually. The CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical, or mechanical hazard. The CPSC’s work to ensure the safety of consumer products – such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters, and household chemicals – contributed significantly to the 30 percent decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury, call CPSC’s hotline at (800) 638-2772 or CPSC’s teletypewriter at (800) 638-8270 or visit CPSC’s Web site at www.cpsc.gov/talk.html. Consumers can obtain this release and recall information on CPSC’s Web site at www.cpsc.gov. To join a CPSC e-mail subscription list, please go to https://www.cpsc.gov/cpsclist.aspx.
CPSC Recall Hotline: (800) 638-2772
CPSC Media Contact: (301) 504-7908
SOURCE U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission