New Australian Standards For Products With Small Button And Coin Batteries

The Australian Government recently introduced new safety laws and standards for consumer goods that contain button or coin batteries supplied to Australia, which come into effect 22 June 2022.

We have summarised these new standards below, and you can also find the full details at ACCC’s Product Safety pages here.

In Australia, children have died, and a growing number are seriously injured after swallowing or inserting a coin battery that they have accessed through a variety of ways:

  • Products with unsecure battery compartments
  • Button/coin battery packaging that is not child resistant
  • Poor quality products which release button/coin batteries when dropped or broken
  • Spare batteries being provided loose in product packaging
  • Spare batteries not being kept out of reach around the home
  • Used batteries not being properly disposed of.

These new standards aim to minimise the risk of death and injury to children in Australia and at Whistle, our commitment is to deliver quality products to the market that are safe and effective. We’re working with all our clients to bring them up to speed with these new safety standards and ensure their products are market-ready next year. In summary these new standards include the following requirements:

  • Consumer goods containing button/coin batteries that are intended to be replaced by the consumer must have a secure battery compartment that is resistant to being opened by young children.
  • Consumer goods containing button/coin batteries, whether or not the batteries are intended to be replaced, must be secure and not release the batteries during reasonably foreseeable use or misuse conditions.
  • Compliance testing must demonstrate that safety requirements have been met.
  • Warnings are required on the packaging of consumer goods containing button/coin batteries or in accompanying instructions. If the consumer good is supplied unpackaged, or not supplied with instructions, warnings must be attached or included with the consumer good to alert consumers that a button/coin battery is included with the product and the hazard button/coin batteries pose to children.

Here is an example of what has been recommended as an appropriate warning on packaging:

Source: “Button coin batteries and consumer goods containing button coin batteries – fact sheet”, May 2021, www.accc.gov.au.

Any questions about these new standards? Let us help you.

If you are in the process of developing a product, it’s essential to get yourself up to speed with these new standards so that your product is compliant by June 2022. We can facilitate compliance testing and anything else required so that your product becomes market-ready.

If you have any questions regarding these new standards that will come into effect from 22 June 2022, please contact us on 03 9561 5810.

Paul Miller
paulm@whistledesign.com.au

A founding Director at Whistle Design Group, Paul is focused on helping clients achieve growth through the development of market-changing products. He is passionate about business strategy, communication and designing products that enhance the human experience. Paul believes that the future will always be shaped by those who are willing to challenge and create.