Children’s Product Safety Facts

How do I find out if a children’s product is unsafe, and if it is illegal to sell in Vermont?

If a product is listed in the CPSC’s or NHTSA’s comprehensive list of unsafe children’s products, it is deemed to pose a safety hazard to children. Also, it is illegal to sell any such product in Vermont because the Vermont Department of Health has adopted the CPSC and NHTSA lists by reference in accordance with Act 42.

A sellor or lessor will not be held in violation of the law if the specific children’s product sold or leased was not included on the Department of Health’s referenced lists fourteen (14) days before the sale or commencement of the lease.

To see whether a certain product is on the list, you may use the “Find on this page” function of your browser. If you need assistance in using this function or in searching the list, please let us know.

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How can I get the information I need without searching this list on-line?

We will be glad to help you. You may contact us us at the number below.


How can I get product recall information sent directly to me?

You may sign up to receive Consumer Product Safety Commission news releases, which include product recalls and other safety information, and the agency’s public calendar. These are sent by e-mail the same day they are issued.

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Does this law apply to yard sales and second-hand shops?

Yes. This law applies to any person who manufactures, sells, resells, leases, sublets or otherwise places in the stream of commerce an unsafe children’s product as defined above.


How can I make a complaint if I know of someone selling an unsafe product?

You may make a complaint by contacting us at the number below. When making a complaint, you will be asked to complete an anonymous form providing details of the sale. The seller will be contacted by letter informing them of the alleged violation. The penalty for a willful and knowing violation of the Children’s Product Safety Act is imprisonment of up to one year, or a fine of up to $1000, or both.

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If I have an unsafe product, what should I do with it?

If a product you have has been recalled, that usually means you should stop using it, but you should follow the specific guidance in the recall announcement on that product. There is usually no end date to a product recall.

Even if you don’t learn of the recall for a year or more, you should follow the guidance in the recall notice issued. Call the company at the toll-free number given in the recall to secure the remedy. If you are unsuccessful with the company, you may contact the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s toll-free hotline (1-800-638-2772) or, for child passenger safety equipment, contact NHTSA’s toll-free hotline (1-888-327-4236).

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If I am a merchant with an unsafe product, what should I do with it?

Retailers are given notice of recalls well before public announcement. Notice includes information to readily identify recalled products, e.g., UPC codes, date codes, model numbers and any other critical identifying information.

Retailers are asked to stop the sale of any recalled product, isolate inventory of the recalled product and are given instructions on how to return and/or dispose of these products so they are not released for sale.

Retailers are also provided with Recall posters to display in conspicuous locations and are informed of the remedy.

For further guidance contact the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Office of Compliance at 301-504-0608, ext. 15 or at sect15@cpsc.gov. Information can also be found at http://www.cpsc.gov.

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What if I suspect a product is unsafe, but isn't recalled?

If you or someone in your family was harmed by a consumer product, or if you believe a product is unsafe, the Consumer Product Safety Commission welcomes your report about an unsafe product. You can file that report by e-mail (hazard@cpsc.gov), phone (1-800-638-2772, x650), fax (1-800-809-0924) or letter (U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, Injury Report, Washington, DC 20207).

If you suspect that your child safety seat is unsafe, call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Auto Safety Hotline at 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236) and a NHTSA representative will record your report. Your report will be entered into NHTSA’s vehicle owner’s complaint database and used with other reports to determine if a safety-related defect trend exists.

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Where can I get more information about the law?

The text of the Vermont Children’s Product Safety Act can be found at http://www.leg.state.vt.us/docs/2002/acts/ACT042.HTM. The law has been officially codified at 9 VSA Sections 2470b.

Where can I get more information about child safety?

Contact

Edith Munene
Injury  and Violence Prevention Program
802-651-1978

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