News Releases

ASTM International Updates World-Renowned Toy Safety Standard


After diligent collaboration over five years, hundreds of leading experts in and advocates for toy safety have completed a major revision to one of the world’s most respected and widely used toy safety standards. The updated standard has been published as F963-16: Standard Consumer Safety Specification for Toy Safety.

“We identified existing parts of the 2011 standard that needed clarification, updating, or alignment,” said ASTM member Joan Lawrence, senior vice president, standards and regulatory affairs, Toy Industry Association, Inc., and chair of the ASTM F15.22 subcommittee. “We also looked at potential emerging safety issues, new product features and new ways that toys are being used that may pose a risk to children.”

The 2016 update includes the following changes, among others:
•    new requirements to the already-extensive section on battery safety;
•    soaking and compression tests for magnets;
•    changes to requirements for toys involving projectiles;
•    new requirements for materials and toys that could expand if accidentally swallowed;
•    new requirements and clarifications related to microbiological safety;
•    clarifications to requirements related to heavy elements in the substrate materials of toys and the addition of an optional, alternate test method for total screen testing;
•    a new curb impact requirement, a clarification of overload and stability requirements, and a strap exemption for ride-on toys; and,
•    clarification of requirements and supplemental guidance for impact hazards.

Manufacturers, importers, and retailers use the standard to design and sell products that comply with laws such as the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Act and the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA), which mandates that all toys comply with F963.

Regulatory bodies and testing laboratories also use the standard. For example, labs use the requirements and test methods within the standard to check for compliance and to support certification, as required under CPSIA. 

F963 was created in 1986 by ASTM International Committee on Consumer Products (F15), and is the modern edition of the world’s first comprehensive safety standard, dating to 1976.  According to Lawrence, the Subcommittee on Toy Safety (F15.22) recognizes the importance of its role in protecting children and continually looks to ensure that the standard supports safety and reflects the latest information on risk.   

Further information on F963 can be found here.  To read the Standardization News feature article on this revision, click here.

ASTM welcomes participation in the development of its standards at

For more news in this sector, visit

ASTM Committee F15 on Consumer Products Next Meeting: Nov. 14-16, 2016, November Committee Week, Orlando, Fla.
Media Inquiries: Dan Bergels, tel +1.610.832.9602;
Technical Contact: Joan Lawrence, Toy Industry Association, New York, N.Y., tel +1.646.520.4844;
ASTM Staff Contact: Leonard Morrissey, tel +1.610.832.971;

Release #10193

October 20, 2016

Search News Releases

Advanced Search