The Motorcycle Industry Council (MIC) supports the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission’s recommendation to Congress to give the agency more flexibility to grant exclusions from the lead content limit to address certain products. The CPSC requested this flexibility in its January 15 report to Congress containing recommendations to improve the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA).
"We are encouraged that the consensus report of all five Commissioners specifically mentions ATVs and dirtbikes, recognizing the dangers to riders caused by the current ban on youth motorcycles and ATVs," said MIC general counsel, Paul Vitrano.
In addition to the consensus report, MIC is encouraged that CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum also called on Congress to create a new "functional purpose" exclusion to the lead content limits. This amendment would permit the Commission to grant exclusions for youth ATVs and motorcycles since lead in many accessible components is necessary for their functional purpose, contact with those components is infrequent and the elimination of lead is impracticable or impossible based on available scientific or technical information.
"It is clear that the CPSC strongly believes that the ban on youth model ATVs and motorcycles needs to end," Vitrano also said. "MIC calls on Congress to draft legislation as soon as possible to either grant a categorical exemption for these products, as provided by H.R. 1587, a pending bill with 55 bi-partisan co-sponsors, or to give the CPSC the flexibility to do so."
In a Jan. 12 letter, the MIC thanked the CPSC for its efforts to promote youth safety by implementing a temporary stay to make some youth vehicles available despite the ban. MIC also suggested three ways to completely or substantially exclude or exempt youth off-highway motorcycles and all-terrain vehicles from those provisions:
1. a "functional purpose" amendment
2. a categorical exemption, such as would be provided by H.R. 1587
3. a change in the definition of "accessibility" for powersports products
Vitrano said it will again be critical for enthusiasts and industry to mount a massive grassroots effort targeting Congress to advocate for one of these amendments to the CPSIA. In the coming days, MIC will be launching advocacy campaigns through www.stopthebannow.com.