Overall, intrinsic toy hazards have minimized, but toy-related injuries still occur. Continuing to assure safety in toy manufacture internationally, ISO 8124-1:2022 – Safety of toys – Part 1: Safety aspects related to mechanical and physical properties has been published.
What is ISO 8124-1:2022?
ISO 8124-1:2022—largely based upon existing standards in the European Union (EN 71-1) and the United States (ASTM F963)—specifies acceptable criteria for the structural characteristics of toys, including shape, size, contour, spacing, and properties specific to certain toy categories. This latter characteristic, for example, would include minimum tip angles for certain ride-on toys. Interestingly, specifying this property is crucial, as ride-on toys see numerous injuries each year.
ISO 8124-1:2022 is a sizable document, as its contents address a range of aspects on toys, as well as the means of limiting harm presented by those components. It also stipulates that appropriate warnings and instructions be provided on certain toys and their packaging. This confronts an issue with international standardization, as the diversity of languages may present a problem in terms of labeling. Therefore, Annex B of the standard gives the wording of instructions and warnings as general, not specified, information.
ISO 8124-1:2022 is applicable to all toys. According to the international standard, this is any product or material designed or clearly intended for use in play by children under 14 years of age. Its scope, however, does not include products such as bicycles and slingshots. Since toys vary in use among the assortment of age groups covered by this scope, guidelines deviate between different age groups.
You can learn more about all ISO 8124 – Toy Safety Standards here.
What Are the Changes to ISO 8124-1:2022?
ISO 8124-1:2022 revises the 2018 edition of the same standard for the safety of physical and mechanical properties of toys. It also incorporates the amendments made to the 2018 edition, ISO 8124-1:2018/Amd.1:2020 and ISO 8124-1:2018/Amd.2:2020. As a document purposed with addressing the many potential hazards among various components of toys for children of different ages, this international standard needs to remain current with emerging issues and trends. Some changes to ISO 8124-1:2022 include:
- Modified the definitions for “pull or push toy” and “resilient material”
- Limited the exemptions for writing materials such that they do not include removable components for small parts for children under 36 months
- Added labeling requirement for retail displays for unlabeled toys without packaging
- Eliminated the requirement that the warning be on the product for other cords in toys intended for children 18 months and over but under 36 months
- Specified location of the warning on electrical cables
- Added toys intended to be suspended from a wall or ceiling to the scope of section 126.96.36.199, making it “Toys otherwise intended to be attached to a cradle, cot, perambulator or carriage or intended to be suspended over a cot from a wall or ceiling”
- Added requirement for safety stop or locking device for section on other toys with folding mechanisms
- Added options to ventilation requirements
- Added labeling requirement for protective equipment for toy bicycles
- Added new speed limitations for electrically-driven ride-on toys
- Added examples to clarify scope of requirements for mouth-actuated toys
- Added requirement for pull or push toys to acoustic requirements
- Added requirements for functional toys
- Added requirements for toys intended to come into contact with food
- Added requirement for inflatable toys
- Modified dimensions in Figure 35, “Head probe”
- Added new clauses for:
- Warning for flying toys
- Instructions of projectile toys
- Instructions of toy bicycles
- Added new sections for addressing instructional literature for:
- “Toy scooters”
- “Remote-controlled flying toys”
All significant changes made to the new edition of the toy safety standard are listed in informative Annex G of the ISO 8124-1:2022 document.
ISO 8124-1:2022 – Safety of toys – Part 1: Safety aspects related to mechanical and physical properties is available on the ANSI Webstore.
What Are the Changes to ISO 8124-1:2018?
The previous edition of this standard, ISO 8124-1:2018, was also a substantial revision. It updated the 2014 version of the standard, with the following notable changes:
- Modified numerous definitions, including “cords,” “elastic,” “A-weighted equivalent sound pressure level,” and “pull or push toy”
- Added exemption of paperboard from reasonably foreseeable abuse testing
- Clarified warning requirements for toys for children 36 months and over but under 72 months
- Modified kinetic energy density per area of contact requirements for arrows
- Modified the C-weighted requirement for close-to-the-ear toys
- Added new subclauses:
- “Yo-yo balls”
- “Straps intended to be worn fully or partially around the neck”
- “Sledges and toboggans with cords for pulling”
- “Jaw entrapment in handles and steering wheels”
- “Test for fixed loops and nooses”
- “Electric resistance of cords”
- “Yo-yo ball measurements”
- “Measurement of elastic constant k”
- “Measurement of initial length l0”
- “Jaw entrapment test”
- Added additional subclauses in Annexes
What Does ISO 8124-1:2022 Not Cover?
ISO 8124-1:2022 does not purport to cover or include every conceivable potential hazard of a particular toy or toy category, and it does not eliminate the need for parental responsibility.
Please note that, other than labeling guidelines, ISO 8124-1:2022 does not give guidelines for characteristics of toys that present inherent, recognized hazards integral to the functioning of the toy (e.g. the needle of a toy sewing kit).