US Legislation to Regulate the Use of Flame Retardants in Consumer Products
03/26/2014

Since the beginning of 2014, a number of bills have been introduced to regulate flame retardants in children’s products, upholstered furniture and other consumer products in some states in the US.

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In April 1992, California added tris (2-chloroethyl) phosphate (TCEP) onto the Proposition 65 (Prop 65) list of chemicals as a chemical known to the state to cause cancer. California has since incorporated, among other flame retardants, tris (1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) phosphate (TDCPP) onto the Prop 65 list of chemicals (http://oehha.ca.gov/prop65/prop65_list/Newlist.html). The listing of TDCPP since October 2011 has resulted in a number of consent agreements; notably in polyurethane (PU) foam materials in a wide range of consumer products (http://newsletter.sgs.com/eNewsletterPro/uploadedimages/000006/sgs-safeguards-02514-california-prop-65-flame-retardants-in-polyurethane-foams-a4-en-14.pdf). These two flame retardants are also regulated by Maryland, New York and Vermont.

US Legislation to Ensure Consumer Product Safety

Since the beginning of 2014, a number of bills have been introduced at the state level to regulate the use of certain flame retardants in consumer products, particularly children’s products and residential upholstered furniture. These include Alaska, New York and Washington. The bill in Alaska, in addition to flame retardants, also proposes to regulate a list of yet-to-be-defined chemicals known as Chemicals of High Concern (CHCs). In Washington, three bills have been introduced and all are in relation to regulating TCEP and TDCPP in children’s products and residential upholstered furniture. Highlights of these bills are summarized in Table 1 within the latest SafeGuardS bulletin (http://newsletter.sgs.com/eNewsletterPro/uploadedimages/000006/sgs-safeguards-03814-us-flame-retardants-a4-en-14.pdf).

Definition of Flame Retardants

TCEP is tris(2-chloroethyl) phosphate
TCPP is tris(1-chloro-2-propyl) phosphate
TDCPP is tris(1,3-dichloro-2-propyl) phosphate

Sources

Senate Bill 151 (http://www.legis.state.ak.us/basis/get_bill.asp?session=28&bill=SB0151) and references therein

A06557 (http://www.assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?default_fld=&bn=A06557&term=2013&Summary=Y&Actions=Y&Votes=Y&Memo=Y&Text=Y)

Senate Bill 5984 (http://apps.leg.wa.gov/documents/billdocs/2013-14/Pdf/Bills/Senate%20Bills/5984.pdf)

Senate Bill 6048 (http://apps.leg.wa.gov/documents/billdocs/2013-14/Pdf/Bills/Senate%20Bills/6048.pdf)

Substituted Senate Bill 6540 (http://apps.leg.wa.gov/documents/billdocs/2013-14/Pdf/Bills/Senate%20Bills/6540-S.pdf)

About SGS Services for Consumer Products

Throughout a global network of laboratories, SGS is able to provide a range of services, including analytical testing (http://www.sgs.com/en/Consumer-Goods-Retail/Toys-and-Juvenile-Products/Toys/Testing/Material-Testing.aspx) and consultancy for flame retardants TCEP, TCPP and TDCPP as well as other restricted substances in consumer products for the US and other international markets.

Please do not hesitate to contact the SGS experts for further information.

SGS is the world’s leading inspection, verification, testing and certification company. SGS is recognized as the global benchmark for quality and integrity. With more than 80,000 employees, SGS operates a network of over 1,650 offices and laboratories around the world.