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Standards for Child-Resistant Items

Updated on January 9, 2018
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Tamara Wilhite is a technical writer, industrial engineer, mother of 2, and a published sci-fi and horror author.


The term child-proof has been replaced by the phrase child-resistant. This is an admission that items meant to be hard for a child to open will not always stop them as well as prevent lawsuits based on the fact that not all children were stopped.

Child-resistant packaging is designed to be easy for adults to open while requiring a significant amount of time for a child under the age of five to open.

Childproofing is intended to keep children away from potentially dangerous things.
Childproofing is intended to keep children away from potentially dangerous things. | Source

ASTM Standards for Child-Resistant Items

ASTM D3475 gives the classifications of the different types of child-resistant packaging. ASTM D3810 is the standard for the minimal torque needed to open Type IA child resistant closures.

ASTM D3472 describes the test procedure for reverse-ratchet torque closures for Type IA closures. ASTM D3470 describes the test procedure for Type IIA child-resistant lug strippage closures. ASTM D3469 measures the vertical downward force required to disengage lugs used in Type IIA child-resistant packages.

ASTM D3968 describes the method of monitoring the rotational torque needed to open Type IIIA child resistant closures. ASTM D3747 gives the method of using torque meters to measure the force required to open child-resistant packages and other types of packages.

ASTM D375-12 states that the types of child-resistant packaging for different types of products are outlined in federal standards like Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Title 16 Part 1700.

ASTM D3481 is the method of testing child-resistant closures that require dis-similar (different) motions to be used on two different parts simultaneously. ASTM D7257 is the test procedure for testing 2 piece child-resistant closures requiring similar actions performed simultaneously.
ASTM F2456 is the standard for lockable firearms storage containers that resist access by the young.

However, child-resistant storage does not mean that the unit will prevent the firearm storage container from being opened by an adult and then stolen or the youth resistant firearm storage container (YRFC) from being stolen itself.

European Standards for Child-Resistant Packaging

DIN 55560-1 is the German standard for the mechanical testing of plastic screw closures used for re-closable child-resistant packaging. DIN EN 14375 is the standard for child-resistant pharmaceutical non-re-closable packaging. For many applications, ISO standards for child-resistant packaging are used.

Safety standards have to take misuse of items into account, not just their intended or ideal use.
Safety standards have to take misuse of items into account, not just their intended or ideal use. | Source

ISO Standards for Child-Resistant Packaging

ISO 8317 is the standard for re-closable child-resistant packaging. ISO 8317 addresses both the performance requirements and approved test methods of child-resistant packaging. ISO 8317 also outlines the requirements for packaging to be sufficiently accessible to adults.

ISO 13127 gives the method of mechanically testing reclosable child resistant packaging. ISO 13127 was published in 2012. This standard originated with the French standards organization AFNOR. ISO 13127 allows for the mechanical test results of child-resistant packaging to be compared to packaging not considered child-proof.

Federal Standards for Child-Resistant Items

40 CFR (Code of Federal Regulations) Part 157 is the U.S. government's standards for packaging for pesticides. CFR Title 40 Part 157 part B gives the requirements for child-resistant packaging to be used for pesticides and products like insect bait.

16 CFR Part 1210, a standard issued by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, describes the design requirements for cigarette lighters to make them child-resistant. This standard applies to disposable lighters made after 1994. 16 CFR Part 1212 describes how multi-purpose lighters are to be made resistant to use by young children.

CFR Title 16 Part 1700 is the U.S. federal standard for poison prevention packaging. This standard mandates special packaging designed to prevent children under five years old from being able to open packages containing potentially dangerous items like small packages of vitamins, over the counter medications and prescription drugs. The child resistant packaging is in addition to any labeling, boxes that contain the item on the shelf and shipping containers.


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