18 Sept 2015
New Standards for Ensuring Safety of Various Items of Children’s Clothing and Childcare Articles
On 24 August 2015, Commission Implementing Decision 2015/1345 detailing references of standards for various items of children’s clothing and childcare articles entered into force. It was published in the EU’s Official Journal on 4 August 2015.
Specifically, the Decision covers one reference for a standard for children’s clothing and four references for standards for childcare articles. The references of the standards are set out below:
(a) EN 14682:2014 ‘Safety of children's clothing — Cords and drawstrings on children's clothing — Specifications’;
(b) EN 1466:2014 ‘Child use and care articles — Carry cots and stands — Safety requirements and test methods’;
(c) EN 1930:2011 ‘Child use and care articles — Safety barriers — Safety requirements and test methods’;
(d) EN 12221-1:2008+A1:2013 ‘Child use and care articles — Changing units for domestic use — Part 1: Safety requirements’;
(e) EN 12221-2:2008+A1:2013 ‘Child use and care articles — Changing units for domestic use — Part 2: Test methods’.
The Commission adopted this decision on the basis of the General Product Safety Directive (2001/95/EC) which obliges the EU to be proactive and to constantly ensure a high level of protection of consumer health and safety. The Directive stipulates that only “safe products” can be placed on the EU market, and continues to define “safe products” as ones which conform to, among others, the voluntary national standards which transpose the European standards.
Specifically, Article 4(2) of the Directive requires the Commission to publish in the EU’s Official Journal all references of European standards once they are adopted.
European standards are established by the European Standardization Organizations, of which there are three: the European Committee for Standardization (CEN), the European Committee for Electro-technical Harmonisation (CENELEC) and the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI).
Regarding the first of the above five references of standards, it was CEN that was requested by the Commission to draft European safety norms to deal with risks of:
- injury, and
that may be posed by cords and drawstrings on children’s clothes.
Hong Kong traders should take note that this new standard supersedes standard EN 14682:2007.
Even though both CEN and CENELEC are mandated by the Commission to develop consumer safety standards for childcare articles, it was, again, CEN which adopted the other four standards listed above.
Hong Kong traders wishing to avail of the standards in order to ensure conformity of their products with the legal safety requirements may obtain them, for a nominal fee, from any of the national Member bodies of CEN. For more details on how to contact national Member bodies, Hong Kong traders should visit the following webpage: CEN Members.
The Decision with the references for the standards can be accessed via the following link: Commission Implementing Decision 2015/1345.