November 23, 2017

On October 30, 2017, NHTSA Published the Final Rule with Its Response to a Petition for Reconsideration Regarding Electronic Stability Control Systems for Heavy Vehicles, FMVSS 136, (49 CFR 571.136)

DATES: Petitions for Reconsideration of this Final Rule must be received by December 14, 2017

Summary:  The petitioner, Truck and Engine Manufacturers Association (EMA), requested that NHTSA amend the test conditions for the agency’s performance test by allowing a larger lane width for long wheelbase truck tractors. The agency decided to grant the petition because it believed there was sufficient evidence to indicate that a larger lane width is needed for testing of long wheelbase truck tractors.

On October 27, 2017, the CPSC Published a Rule Relating to Pthalates in Children’s Toys and Child Care Articles (16 CFR 1307)

DATES:  The Rule becomes effective on April 25, 2018.

Summary: The CPSC issued the final rule relating to phthalates in children’s toys and child care articles. The CPSC Staff did not find any new information that suggested that the prohibitions should apply to all children’s products, and so the Commission limited its Final Rule to children’s toys and child care articles.

Based upon the Chronic Hazard Advisory Panel report that looked at 14 pthalates, the final rule prohibits children’s toys and child care articles containing four phthalates that were not subject to restrictions under the CPSIA: DIBP, DPENP, DEXP, and DCHP. The Commission concluded that prohibiting children’s toys and child care articles containing concentrations of more than 0.1 percent of DIBP, DPENP, DEXP, or DCHP is necessary to protect the health of children., the final rule three prohibits children’s toys and child care articles containing four phthalates that were not subject to restrictions under the CPSIA: DIBP, DPENP, DEXP, and DCHP. The Commission concluded that prohibiting children’s toys and child care articles containing concentrations of more than 0.1 percent of DIBP, DPENP, DEXP, or DCHP is necessary to protect the health of children.

“FASTER, SMARTER, GREENER–THE FUTURE OF THE CAR AND URBAN MOBILITY”

October 11, 2017, I attended Next Energy for the book launch of “Faster, Smarter, Greener—THE FUTURE OF THE CAR AND URBAN MOBILITY” by Dr. Venkat Sumantran, Chairman of Celeris Technologies and formerly with General Motors.  Dr Sumantran stated that the mobility system of the future must be:

  • Connected;
  • Heterogeneous;
  • Intelligent; and
  • Personalized

Dr Sumantran discussed the above areas which he called CHIP mobility. It was a very interesting presentation.  After the presentation, there was a panel discussion and questions from the audience.  Members of the panel were:

  • Sue Zielinski, former Director of Ann Arbor SMART, and now an independent consultant
  • Mark Schulz, Founder and Special Venture Partner of Fontinalis Partners; and
  • Jean Redfield, President and CEO of Next Energy

I obtained a copy of the book and can’t wait to read it.

On October 6, 2017, the CPSC Published a Notice of a Petition for Rulemaking for a Safety Standard for Magnet Sets

DATES:  Submit comments by December 5, 2017

Summary:  The Consumer Product Safety Commission has published a notice inviting comments on a Petition for Rulemaking from Zen Magnets, LLC.  The petition proposes that the CPSC establish a safety standard for small magnet set which would:

  • Require individual magnets and each magnet in a magnet set that fits entirely within the cylinder described in 16 CFR 1501.4 (small parts cylinder) to have a flux index of 50 kG2mm2 or less if the product is designed, marketed, or manufactured for children under the age of 14 years.
  • Establish standards for magnet set packaging, such as requiring packaging to be difficult for children to open and assist users in determining whether all magnets are returned to the package after use.
  • Provide specific warning requirements relating to ingestion hazards and recommending that the product is not intended for children;
  • Provide instructional requirements that indicate how to avoid using the magnet set in a way that can lead to ingesting, aspirating, or inserting the magnets into the body and how to return magnets to the packaging; and
  • Require warning and instructions for magnet sets to include an age recommendation of 14 years or older.

On September 28, 2017, the CPSC published a Guidance Document Regarding Use of Non-Polymeric Organohalogen Flame Retardants in Certain Consumer Goods

SUMMARY: The Commission recommends that manufacturers of children’s products, upholstered furniture sold for use in residences, mattresses (and mattress pads), and plastic casings surrounding electronics refrain from intentionally adding non- polymeric, organohalogen flame retardants (‘‘OFRs’’) to their products. Further, the Commission recommends that, before purchasing such products for resale, importers, distributors, and retailers obtain assurances from manufacturers that such products do not contain OFRs. Finally, the Commission recommends that consumers, especially those who are pregnant or with young children, inquire and obtain assurances from retailers that such products do not contain OFRs.