One of the best ways to ensure children’s products are safe is to regularly check the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s Recall List. This federal agency reports details about products that have known defects, what the specific hazards are for each product and how the company will correct the problem.
When it comes to children’s sleepwear, the agency frequently lists clothing that poses a risk of burn injuries. Manufacturers directly contact all known purchasers to alert them to the hazard. The CPSC’s instructions provide a manufacturer’s contact information so parents can receive a full refund.
The Flammable Fabrics Act
Burn injuries can be particularly devastating for children. Not only are these types of injuries some of the most painful, but they also often cause scarring that affects children’s self-confidence and sense of identity for the rest of their lives. Children’s burn injuries used to have a much higher occurrence rate, and the damage inflicted was often fatal.
One of the reasons the numbers have fallen, research indicates, is due to the Flammable Fabrics Act. After this law, pediatric burn unit providers noted fewer pajama fires, and these caused only trivial burns instead of disfiguring and/or fatal damage.
Flame resistant sleepwear
The CPSC explains that if a child’s sleepwear is flame resistant, it will self-extinguish if it comes in contact with a flame. All children’s sleepwear from size 9 months to size 14 must either be flame resistant or tight fitting.
To test clothing for flammability, the manufacturer must test a sample of each component of a garment. With the sample suspended by a metal holder in a test cabinet, the tester applies gas flames to the edge of the sample for three seconds and then measures the char length. Each garment must have samples that undergo this test twice: once after production and again after 50 launderings.
Pajamas and other sleepwear items that fit snugly against the skin do not have to be treated with the chemicals that prevent the materials from easily catching fire. These items must have tags and permanent labels that indicate the manufacturer has not treated them with flame-resistant chemicals and has created them to meet the government’s “tight fitting” requirements. Parents should ensure that the clothing fits as it should to lower the risk of burns.