Workshop and EOS Meeting Highlight Trip to Egypt
Status of MOU Partnership Discussed
Teresa Cendrowska, vice president, global cooperation, ASTM International, met with officials from the Egyptian Organization for Standardization and Quality at EOS headquarters in Cairo, Egypt, in early June. Topics of discussion included the growing partnership between ASTM International and EOS as well as the use of international standards in compliance with the WTO TBT agreement. As a result of the memorandum of understanding between EOS and ASTM International, signed in 2002, the Egyptian national standards body has been able to use more than 500 ASTM standards as the basis of Egyptian national standards, thus facilitating commerce and trade domestically and internationally.
Cendrowska also participated in a workshop on Egyptian and U.S. Standardization Systems presented by the AmCham Egypt Trade Related Assistance Center and Trade Committee, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Commerce and EOS. Following an MOU signing ceremony between EOS and the American National Standards Institute, the workshop featured an expanded roundtable discussion for government and private sector experts. Presenting for the U.S., in addition to Cendrowska, were Joseph Bhatia, president, ANSI, Carmiña Londoño, group leader, Global Standards and Information Group and Amer Kayani, U.S. commercial counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Egypt. Magda Shahin, director, AmCham Trade Related Assistance Center moderated the session. Mahmoud Eisa, EOS chair and Omar El Derini, chair, AmCham Trade Committee, provided comments and insight from the Egyptian perspective. Cendrowska’s presentation included an overview of ASTM International, details of ASTM’s memorandum of understanding program and highlights of the successful MOU partnership between ASTM International and EOS that was initiated in 2002. The audience, which included representatives of industry, government and academia, actively engaged in the question and answer session that followed the discussion.
New Law to Protect Children from Burns, Requires ASTM Standard
ASTM Standard F2517 Cited in Gas Can Law
A new law approved by the U.S. Congress will protect children from gasoline burns by requiring that portable gasoline containers have child-resistant closures that conform to ASTM F2517, Specification for Determination of Child Resistance of Portable Fuel Containers for Consumer Use. President George W. Bush signed the bill into law in July.
ASTM F2517 includes a test method to improve the safety of gas cans and help prevent burn injuries to children resulting from gasoline storage. At a Congressional hearing last year, Consumers Union testified in support of the legislation, noting that child-resistant gas can closures will help protect against accidental poisoning and chemical burns in addition to thermal burns.
By requiring the ASTM standard, the Children’s Gasoline Burn Prevention Act closes a loophole that exempted gas cans, which are sold empty, from stricter child-resistance requirements for packaging for household products that contain dangerous materials. Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri, an author of the law, explained that it “finally closes that loophole, giving parents one less thing they will have to worry about.” Sen. McCaskill successfully advocated for the measure in the Senate, which unanimously approved the legislation in June.
Rep. Dennis Moore of Kansas first introduced and then won bipartisan support for the act after learning of a tragic incident involving two children in Kansas. A four-year-old boy lost his life and his younger brother was permanently scarred after they opened a gas can and spilled its contents near a hot water heater. In 2005 alone, nearly 1,400 children were treated in emergency rooms for injuries related to gasoline containers.
“The F2517 standard is an example of ASTM International’s work to protect children, and I commend the ASTM members who develop and maintain these important consumer safety standards,” said Moore. “We can’t protect our children from every scratch or bruise, but we can certainly take steps to avoid the obvious hazards. Too many children have already been injured or killed in these horrible accidents.”
During a trip to Europe in June, ASTM International staff members Kevin Cummins, director, public policy and international trade (left), and Daniel Schultz, director, committee services (right), discussed ASTM consumer safety standards and European participation in ASTM standards development with Syed Kamall, member of the European Parliament for London (center). Cummins and Schultz also visited the European Aviation Safety Agency in Köln, Germany, to discuss how EASA and ASTM can work together to share successes in creating technical documentation for aviation as well as how to make better use of standards in the EASA electronic library and in regulation. Later in the week, Schultz attended the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) Advisory Board for Healthcare Standards meeting as a liaison for ASTM activities in the sector.
ASTM International welcomed a delegation from the Shanghai Power Equipment Research Institute and the Shanghai Nuclear Energy Research and Design Institute to ASTM headquarters in West Conshohocken, Pa., on June 18. The focus of the meeting was the work of ASTM, particularly energy-related committees and the possibility of collaborative activities between ASTM, SPERI and SNERDI. Following an overview of ASTM International, discussion included increasing participation by Chinese experts in the ASTM standards developing process, potential training programs and the use of ASTM International standards for projects in China. Also included in the day’s events was a virtual meeting with Jon Cavallo, chair, ASTM International Committee D33 on Protective Coating and Lining Work for Power Generation Facilities.
Standards Experts from Korea and Peru Visit ASTM
Visits to Include Trips to Washington, D.C., and October Committee Week
Two experts from the national standards bodies of Korea and Peru will be visiting ASTM International’s headquarters in West Conshohocken, Pa., from Sept. 22-Oct. 18. During their visit, the experts will learn about the standards developing process at ASTM and will travel to the October committee week in Miami, Fla., as well as to Washington, D.C.
Jun-ho Kim is responsible for planning national standardization and supporting standards developing organizations at the Korean Agency for Technology and Standards. Previously, he was a researcher of renewable energy, rotating machinery and nuclear energy standardization.
Jun-ho received a B.S. in electrical engineering and a master’s degree in power electronics from the Sungkyunkwan University, Seoul, Korea. He is currently studying for a Ph.D. degree.
During his visit, Jun-ho plans to learn more about ASTM’s standards development process and the U.S. standardization system. He is interested in how ASTM standards are used and referenced in U.S. technical regulations.
Patricia Castro Espinoza works as an analyst for the Instituto Nacional de Defensa de la Competencia y de la Protección de la Propiedad Intelectual. At INDECOPI, Espinoza is in charge of management and coordination of national technical committees, and she is involved in several regional, national and international standards issues.
Espinoza has a degree from the National Agrarian University, La Molina Lima, Peru. Her specialization was in agricultural business management. She is currently working on a master’s degree in business administration. Espinoza has worked at INDECOPI for 12 years, gaining experience in national and international standardization. She has also taught issues related to trade, quality and other activities within the scope of quality systems and business management.
Health Canada Cites ASTM Bunk Bed Standard
Minimum Design and Performance Requirements Contained in F1427
An ASTM International standard for bunk beds is prominently cited in a recently released advisory from Health Canada, the federal department that is responsible for helping Canadians maintain and improve their health. The standard, ASTM F1427, Consumer Safety Specification for Bunk Beds, is under the jurisdiction of Subcommittee F15.30 on Bunk Beds, which is part of ASTM International Committee F15 on Consumer Products.
The Health Canada advisory states, “When purchasing a bunk bed, make sure it meets the latest version of the ASTM F1427 standard. The current edition is 2007. If there are no labels indicating compliance with the latest ASTM F1427 standard, ask the store before you buy, or contact the manufacturer for more information.”
ASTM F1427, which is used by manufacturers, importers and distributors, establishes minimum requirements for the design and performance of bunk beds, and also contains requirements for labeling and instructional material.
Nominees Sought for Sensory Evaluation Committee’s Peryam Award
ASTM International Committee E18 on Sensory Evaluation is seeking nominees for the David R. Peryam Award. The award was established by Committee E18 to recognize outstanding professionals in the field of applied sensory science. The award is granted to individuals who best exemplify the life and career of David R. Peryam, the father of sensory evaluation and a prolific contributor to Committee E18. Criteria for nominees include:
A complete list of criteria and other information on the award can be found here.
The awards committee strongly prefers that nominees not be aware of their nomination, but that is not a requirement for the award. The award review committee consists of the E18 Awards Committee, a representative of Peryam and Kroll, and other persons, as appropriate, who are knowledgeable about the work of Peryam.
Please submit all nominations to Mona Wolf (phone: 513-891-9100) by Oct. 1. The nominee will be announced on Feb. 15, 2009, and presented at the Spring 2009 ASTM E18 meeting.