CPSIA Update: More Legislation, Some Reason for Hope

By March 17, 2009Regulations

From a news release from the office of Senator Jon Tester (D-MT), “Tester introduces ‘Dirt Bike Bill’

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – Senator Jon Tester today introduced legislation that will once again allow motorsports dealers to sell dirt bikes, all-terrain vehicles and parts for use by young people….[snip]

  • Tester’s bill, called the Dirt Bike Bill, makes two exceptions to the Consumer Product Safety Act:
    It allows manufacturers and retailers to build and sell vehicles intended for children between the ages of 7 and 12 without having to meet lead standards that apply to toys.  The bill says vehicles made for seven to 12-year olds are not “children’s products” and therefore do not have to meet lead safety standards.
  • It prevents second-hand sellers (thrift stores, flea markets, online auctions, yard sales) from being liable for products that contain dangerous levels of lead.  For example, if a person were to sell a toy at a yard sale without knowing it contains lead paint, the toy manufacturer would be liable, not the seller.

Make the toy manufacturer liable? For a product that was sold legally perhaps 10 years ago, but now, resold at a yard sale, is illegal? That only creates more problems, more litigation, more costs, more uncertainty.

But thank you, Senator. That objection aside, it is a very good thing to have a member of the Senate Democratic majority responding to constituents, acknowledging that the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act went way too far, and introducing legislation that could be a vehicle for necessary reform.

The legislation is not yet available at the Thomas website. In the post immediately below we note that Rep. Rehberg (R-MT) has also introduced legislation to exempt off-road vehicles.

AP story, “2 US lawmakers promise bills to undo mini-bike ban“: “The off-road motorcycles and ATVs were unwittingly banned as a result a new national limit on lead in children’s products. It has left dealers holding thousands of the machines and even forced the cancellation of some motocross racing…Dealers say it is silly to think children will eat their mini-bike parts.”

Unwittingly? Perhaps by some.

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