For Toy Safety: US Publishes ASTM F963-23

For US Toymakers, a nationwide mandatory set of safety rules and regulations under ASTM F963 – Standard Consumer Safety Specification for Toy Safety, created by ASTM International, is a comprehensive standard addressing numerous hazards that are identified with toys. 

On October 13, 2023, ASTM International has published a revised F963 Standard Consumer Safety Specification for Toy Safety (ASTM F963-23), impacting sections for acoustics (sound level of toys), battery accessibility, expanding materials, and projectiles, in addition to clarifying and aligning the requirements for phthalates, exemptions for toy substrate materials, and tracking labels for toys with respective federal regulations and US Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) policy. 

Safety RequirementsRevisions
Heavy Metal
  • Revised the substrate exemption scope to align with CPSC.
  • Add use and abuse tests for sound-producing toys intended for children ages 8 years to 14 years. The use and abuse requirements appropriate to a child 36 months to 96 months of age are to be applied.
  • Add statement to specify if the toy has features that allow it to fit into multiple categories, it shall be tested to all applicable requirements and toys that do not clearly fit in any of the categories listed shall conform to the most appropriate requirements.
  • The following new categories and sound pressure level were listed:
  1. Hand-held Toys
  2. Rattles
  3. Stationary or Self-propelled Tabletop, Floor, or Crib Toys
  4. User-propelled Tabletop, Floor, or Crib Toys
Battery Accessibility
  • A new battery accessibility requirement was added. The new requirement specified if a fastener is used to secure the battery compartment, it shall remain attached to the toy or battery compartment cover, before and after abuse tests.
Expanding Materials
  • Added a paragraph to specify the expanding material requirement was also applicable to the following:
  1. Components of a toy which are small parts but are encased in an outer covering that is not a small part, and the outer covering is intended to be dissolved in liquid, opened, or broken by the child to reveal the inner expanding component.
  2. Components received by the consumer in an expanded state which are not small parts, but which have the potential to contract in size (such as during storage) to yield are-expandable small part.
  • A detail kinetic energy test method for bow and arrow was added.
  • Revised to align with CPSC requirement.
Tracking Label
  • New added requirement to align with CPSC requirement.

Implementation Timeline

If no objections are raised, the revision becomes mandatory 180 days after notification, i.e. mid-April 2024.

This article is originally published by SGS:

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