New guidelines on children’s nightwear

The Commerce Commission has released guidance for parents and traders on new safety regulations for children’s nightwear.

The new regulations and the standard they enforce are intended to reduce the number of serious or fatal burn injuries to children by informing consumers of the relative flammability hazard of children’s nightwear.

The regulations came into force in April 2016, but a one-year transition period was allowed, so that suppliers and retailers could sell existing stock and ensure new stock meets the regulations.

The key change is around labelling, with a reduction from three types to two:

  • White label: low fire hazard fabrics
  • Red label: higher fire hazard risk
  • Orange label: now phased out, and must no longer appear on nightwear

The Commission has produced guidance for both traders and consumers which can be found on the Commission’s website. The consumer information is also available in brochure format – contact the Commission to request copies. It will be made available in various languages, for example Maori, Samoan, Tongan and Simplified Chinese.

And it’s not just the Commerce Commission working to get this message out. Others like Safekids and online marketplace Trade Me are pushing the nightwear safety message.

Sellers who list children’s nightwear on Trade Me are automatically sent an email from Trade Me’s Trust and Safety team, alerting them that their listing needs to meet the product safety standards.

James Ryan from Trade Me’s Trust and Safety team said “contacting our members to let them know about their obligations is the right thing to do. Many new parents have no idea about this law so it's a chance to educate them in a friendly way, in addition to informing professional sellers.”

Children’s nightwear is among six products for which the Commission enforces product safety standards. The others are baby walkers, children’s toys, cigarette lighters, household cots and pedal bicycles.

See the guidance on children's nightwear.