EN71 Toy Safety Testing & Compliance
Any company placing toys1 onto the market under their name has a legal responsibility for ensuring that those toys conform to the legal requirements and safety standards.
The relevant directive that covers the marketing of toys within the European Union is;
Directive 2009/48/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council – known as the Toy Directive. This has been enacted within the United Kingdom by; The Toys (Safety) Regulations 2011.
These are both detailed documents, but a summary of their requirements is listed below.
The organisation placing toys onto the market must:
- Ensure that the toy conforms to the essential safety requirements. The standards used for testing this are the EN71 series of Standards, of which there are thirteen in total. Toys also need to comply with a number Regulations relating to any potentially hazardous substances they may contain.
- Carry out a safety assessments of the toy.
- Ensure that the toy is correctly marked. This will require the toy to be marked with: Information to allow the product to be traceable, by official bodies, such as Trading Standards.
- The UKCA and/or CE mark – this confirms that that the toy is in conformity to all the requirements.
- The details of the manufacturer2 or authorised representative3.
- Where applicable an age restricting use symbol – with the details of the specific hazard.
- The company must prepare a Declaration of Conformity. This is legal document that must be made available to customers and kept for 10 years.
- Maintain a Technical File. This should contain details of the product, i.e. materials and manufacturing processes.
- Understand that the safety standards do not only apply to the toy but also to the packaging and any other items that may be supplied with the toy. For example, packaging.
Please note that some countries within the European Union have additional requirements to those listed above.
A Toy (1) – A product designed or intended, whether or not exclusively, for use in play by children under 14 years of age. This would include balloons.
Manufacturer (2) – This is not necessarily the company making the toy but can be the organisation placing the toy on the market within the European Union under their name, and, therefore, responsible for its conformity.
Authorised Representative (3) – “Authorised representative” means any natural or legal person established within the Community who has received a written mandate from a manufacturer to act on his behalf in relation to specified tasks.
B-loony wish to state that the above is only a summary of the requirements and to ensure a full understanding of their legal duties, companies should consult with organisations that are specialists in the legal obligations, and, therefore, B-Loony cannot accept responsibility for any omissions or errors in this document.