Tuesday, September 8, 2015

ASTM Standard Targets Laundry Packets

Aiming to make individually wrapped liquid-detergent laundry packets safer, ASTM International has developed a new standard for labeling and packaging those products. The standard, F3159-15, Consumer Safety Specification for Liquid Laundry Packets, is aimed at reducing risks of ingestion, particularly by children.

ASTM says that while laundry packets have gained increasing popularity among consumers, they have become a serious concern due to accidental ingestion by children, which causes coughing, choking, vomiting, respiratory distress, loss of consciousness and corneal burns when contacting the eyes. After learning about 500 injuries caused by laundry packets in 2012, U.S.Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a safety alert that the products should be kept away from children.
According to CPSC, the number of incidents in a relatively short period suggests that children are highly attracted to the soft colorful packets, which a child can easily mistake for candy, toys or teething products. The new standard specifies warning statements and opaque packaging that will obscure visibility of the packets. It also specifies packaging that will be more difficult for children to open.