US updates button cell standard after toddler death

US regulators have voted to bring in a new standard for button cell battery safety in the wake of a toddler death.

US Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) voted to adopt ANSI/UL 4200A-2023 as the safety standard for consumer products containing button cell or coin batteries, the agency said.

CPSC said it had determined that a recent update to ANSI/UL 4200A, published in late August, meets the performance and labelling requirements for Reese’s Law, a piece of US legislation brought in last year following the death of Reese Hamsmith, an 18 month-old girl who died in Texas in 2020 after ingesting a coin battery from a TV remote.

The updated standard will now be the mandatory consumer product safety rule for consumer products containing button cell or coin batteries.

Under the terms of Reese’s Law, CPSC was mandated to update consumer product safety standards in relation to button cell batteries.

The law required that the updated standard would eliminate or adequately reduce the risk of injury from button or coin cell battery ingestion by children that are six years of age or younger.

Six requirements are covered by ANSI/UL 4200A-2023: construction requirements; pre-conditioning requirements; abuse tests; secureness test; product and packaging markings requirements; and instructions requirements.