CPSIA stands for: the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act. Requirements for this new standard affects kids bikes and components marketed in the US and they are catching the attention of dealers as well as suppliers, as they are enforced vigorously.
So, what’s CPSIA all about? Bike Europe asked Piyush Shah, Director SGS Consumer Testing Services.
What does CPSIA test for?
“CPSIA came into existence due to lead which is toxic. The new regulation is about any law standard that falls under the CPSIA jurisdiction. In the US it means that bikes that go for the mandatory standard test for bicycles also have to comply with the new CPSIA requirements for all children products.
These requirements are about the lead content in components such as brake cables, handlebars, grips, tyres etcetera. Anything that is accessible. Any surface component or surface coating. Anything that can be touched. For instance the tyre on a bike has to be tested as it can be touched. However, the inner tube of that tyre doesn’t have to be tested as it is not accessible. Next to complete bikes and its parts, CPSIA also targets helmets, apparel and other children products.
How much is too much lead?
“All these accessible parts, component and accessories have to be tested for lead content. To succeed the tests these component substrates must have less that 300ppm (parts per million) lead content. For coatings or paints the requirements specify a lead content less that 90ppm.
All the CPSIA requirements are targeted to kid bikes for use by kids under 12 years of age. They do not apply to regular adult bikes. Currently regulations on lead content for 26, 28 or 29 inch bikes are not crystal clear. SO, CPSIA requirements are limited to kids bikes, helmets and other children’s products.
Who does the testing?
“At SGS we are a Consumer Product Safety Commission approved institute to test for the new CPSIA regulations. 15 out of our total of 18 testing facilities are approved for CPSIA testing. The SGS test labs are located all around the world including two in Taiwan (Taipei and Taichung) as well as in Shanghai, Guangzhou, Korea, Vietnam, Philippines, Thailand and Hong Kong.”
The CPSIA regulations came into force August 2008. Currently they are getting bigger attention inside the industry. Retailers are now pressing suppliers to meet the new law which is understandable as the penalties are severe on selling products that do not comply to the new ruling. See next paragraph.
Standards & Penalties
The new CPSIA requirements for all children products are laid down in standards 16 CFR 1512 Bicycles; 16 CFR 1203 Helmets; 16 CFR 1303 Lead in Paint 90ppm; Sec. 101 Lead Content 300ppm and in Sec. 103 Tracking Labels. The civil penalties on bringing products onto the US market that do not comply with the new CPSIA requirements are up to US$ 100,000 per violation as well as US$ 15,000,000 per series of violations.
For the complete text of the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act: click here