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H.R.1127 - Children's Sports Athletic Equipment Safety Act
To encourage and ensure the use of safe football helmets and for other purposes.
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SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE; TABLE OF CONTENTS.
SEC. 2. FINDINGS.
(7) The potential for catastrophic injury resulting from multiple concussions make sports-related concussion a significant concern for young athletes, coaches, and parents.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(10) According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, more than 920,000 athletes under the age of 18 were treated in emergency rooms, doctors’ offices, and clinics for football-related injuries in the year 2007.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(12) One study that included a post-season survey of football players found that 47 percent experienced at least one concussion and almost 35 percent experienced multiple concussions.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(13) Medical experts at Boston University School of Medicine found that a deceased 18-year-old athlete, who had experienced multiple concussions playing high school football, suffered from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, a degenerative brain disease caused by head trauma.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(14) A football helmet’s ability to protect players from injury by attenuating acceleration forces can decline over time as the helmet experiences thousands of hits from use during successive football seasons after its original date of manufacture.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(16) A high school football player who suffered brain damage from being hit in the head soon after suffering a previous concussion was wearing a twenty-year-old football helmet when he was injured.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(20) There is no voluntary industry safety standard specifically for youth football helmets worn by children, who have different physiological characteristics from adults in terms of head size and neck strength, especially those who are younger than 12 years old.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(22) Some used helmet reconditioners have falsely certified that reconditioned helmets provided to schools and youth football teams met voluntary industry safety standards.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(24) The industry organization that sets voluntary football helmet safety standards does not conduct independent testing nor market surveillance to ensure compliance with such voluntary safety standards by manufacturers and reconditioners that certify new and used helmets to such standards.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(25) Football helmet manufacturers and reconditioners place product warning labels underneath padding where the warning labels are obscured from view and not clearly legible.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(26) The Consumer Product Safety Act (
(27) The Federal Trade Commission Act (
SEC. 3. FOOTBALL HELMET SAFETY STANDARDS.
(a) Voluntary Standard Determination- Within 9 months after the date of enactment of this Act, the Consumer Product Safety Commission shall determine, with respect to a standard or standards submitted by a voluntary standards-setting organization regarding youth football helmets, reconditioned football helmets, and new football helmet concussion resistance (if feasible) whether--CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) compliance with the standard or standards is likely to result in the elimination or adequate reduction of the risk of injury in connection with the use of football helmets;CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(3) the standard or standards are maintained by a standards-setting organization that meets the requirements of the document ‘ANSI Essential Requirements: Due Process Requirements for American National Standards’ published in January 2010 by the American National Standards Institute (or any successor document).CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(b) Consumer Product Safety Standard- Unless the Consumer Product Safety Commission makes an affirmative determination with respect to a standard or standards under subsection (a) that addresses the matters to which the following standards would apply, the Commission shall initiate a rulemaking proceeding for the development of a consumer product safety rule with respect to the following:CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) YOUTH FOOTBALL HELMETS- A standard for youth football helmets which is informed by children’s different physiological characteristics from adults in terms of head size and neck strength.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(3) NEW FOOTBALL HELMET CONCUSSION RESISTANCE- A standard for all new football helmets that addresses concussion risk, if the Commission determines that such a standard is feasible given current understanding of concussion risk and how helmets can prevent concussion.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(4) FOOTBALL HELMET WARNING LABELS- A standard for warning labels on all football helmets that, at a minimum, requires clearly legible and fully visible statements warning consumers of the limits of protection afforded by the helmet. This standard may include requirements for pictograms, instructions, guidelines, or other cautions to consumers about injury risk and the proper use of football helmets.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) DATE OF MANUFACTURE LABEL FOR NEW FOOTBALL HELMETS- A standard for a clearly legible and fully visible label on all new football helmets stating the football helmet’s original date of manufacture and warning consumers that a football helmet’s ability to protect the wearer can decline over time.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(6) DATE OF RECONDITIONING LABEL FOR RECONDITIONED HELMETS- A standard for a clearly legible and fully visible label on all reconditioned football helmets stating the helmet’s last date of reconditioning, its original date of manufacture, and warning consumers that a football helmet’s ability to protect the wearer can decline over time, despite being properly and regularly reconditioned.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(A) in consultation with representatives of coaches, consumer groups, engineers, medical experts, school sports directors, scientists, and sports equipment standard-setting organizations, examine and assess the effectiveness of any voluntary consumer product safety standards for youth football helmets, reconditioned football helmets, and new football helmet concussion resistance proposed by a voluntary standards-setting organization; andCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(ii) are more stringent than such voluntary standards, if the Commission determines that more stringent standards would further reduce the risk of injury associated with football helmets.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(2) TIMETABLE FOR RULEMAKING- If the Commission does not make an affirmative determination under subsection (a) within the 9-month period, the Commission shall commence the rulemaking required by subsection (b) within 30 days after the end of that 9-month period. The Commission shall periodically review and revise the standards set forth in the consumer product safety rule prescribed pursuant to that proceeding to ensure that such standards provide the highest level of safety for football helmets that is feasible.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 4. APPLICATION OF THIRD-PARTY TESTING AND CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS TO YOUTH FOOTBALL HELMETS.
(a) In General- The third-party testing and certification requirements of section 14(a)(2) of the Consumer Product Safety Act (
(b) Special Application of Definition of Children’s Product for Purposes of Testing and Certification of Football Helmets- For the exclusive purpose of applying the definition of the term ‘children’s product’ in section 3(a)(2) of the Consumer Product Safety Act (
(1) that meets International Organization for Standardization/International Electrotechnical Commission standard 17025:2005 entitled General Requirements for the Competence of Testing and Calibration Laboratories (or any successor standard that is from an accreditation body that is signatory to the International Laboratory Accreditation Cooperation for testing accreditation);CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(2) that meets International Organization for Standardization/International Electrotechnical Commission Guide 65:1996 entitled General Requirements for Bodies Operating Product Certification Systems (or any successor standard that is from an accreditation body that is signatory to the International Accreditation Forum for product certification accreditation); andCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
SEC. 5. FALSE OR MISLEADING CLAIMS WITH RESPECT TO ATHLETIC SPORTING ACTIVITY GOODS.
(a) In General- It is unlawful for any person to sell, or offer for sale, in interstate commerce, or import into the United States for the purpose of selling or offering for sale, any item of equipment intended, designed, or offered for use by an individual engaged in any athletic sporting activity, whether professional or amateur, for which the seller or importer, or any person acting on behalf of the seller or importer, makes any false or misleading claim with respect to the safety benefits of such item.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) IN GENERAL- Violation of subsection (a), or any regulation prescribed under this section, shall be treated as a violation of a rule under section 18 of the Federal Trade Commission Act (
(2) REGULATIONS- Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Commission may promulgate such regulations as it finds necessary or appropriate under this Act under
(3) PENALTIES- Any person who violates subsection (a) or any regulation prescribed under that section, shall be subject to the penalties and entitled to the privileges and immunities provided in the Federal Trade Commission Act as though all applicable terms and provisions of the Federal Trade Commission Act were incorporated in and made part of this Act.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(1) RIGHT OF ACTION- Except as provided in paragraph (5), the attorney general of a State, or other authorized State officer, alleging a violation of subsection (a) or any regulation issued under that section that affects or may affect such State or its residents may bring an action on behalf of the residents of the State in any United States district court for the district in which the defendant is found, resides, or transacts business, or wherever venue is proper under
(2) INITIATION OF CIVIL ACTION- A State shall provide prior written notice to the Federal Trade Commission of any civil action under paragraph (1) together with a copy of its complaint, except that if it is not feasible for the State to provide such prior notice, the State shall provide such notice immediately upon instituting such action.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(A) to prevent the attorney general of a State, or other authorized State officer, from exercising the powers conferred on the attorney general, or other authorized State officer, by the laws of such State; orCommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(B) to prohibit the attorney general of a State, or other authorized State officer, from proceeding in State or Federal court on the basis of an alleged violation of any civil or criminal statute of that State.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink
(5) LIMITATION- No separate suit shall be brought under this subsection if, at the time the suit is brought, the same alleged violation is the subject of a pending action by the Federal Trade Commission or the United States under this section.CommentsClose CommentsPermalink