The Consumer Product Safety Commission voted to delay for another year – until February 2011 – the certification and independent third-party testing rules on the amount of lead allowed in children's products. Those rules were set to kick-in last February but have been delayed twice.
The panel in January voted to push back for a year toy-testing rules that were to take effect earlier this year, following complaints from manufacturers and toy sellers that the rules were confusing and expensive.
The latest delay put off a requirement that some products intended for children up to age 12 be tested for lead content by third-party labs recognized by the CPSC, rather than by manufacturers or suppliers.
The commission will implement third-party lead testing requirements for products including bicycle helmets, bunk beds and infant rattles on Feb. 10. U.S. manufacturers and importers already must comply with federal lead limits for children's products.
The commission's action was aimed at giving businesses more time to comply with the many additional requirements spelled out in the 2008 product safety law.
“The extension of the stay was needed in order to give the agency more time to promulgate rules,” CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum said in a statement.
After a number of recalls in 2007 of toys that had dangerous levels of lead or posed choking hazards, Congress passed the first overhaul of consumer protection laws in almost two decades in 2008.