Drawstrings on Children’s Clothing -- CPSC Guidelines

CPSC reminds clothing suppliers of the danger of using drawstrings in children’s upper outerwear clothing. This hazard can lead to deaths and injuries when drawstrings catch on such items as playground equipment, bus doors, or cribs. The use of drawstrings in children’s upper outerwear clothing has resulted in product recalls.

In February 1996, CPSC issued drawstring guidelines to help prevent children from strangling or getting entangled on the neck and waist drawstrings in upper outerwear, such as jackets and sweatshirts.


In May 2006, CPSC sent letters (pdf) to manufacturers, retailers, and importers of children's upper outwear garments, urging them to make certain the garments do not have drawstrings at the hood , or the neck area that pose a strangulation hazard to children.


The letter urged the firms to make certain that all children's upper outerwear they import, manufacture, distribute, or sell in the United States complies with the applicable voluntary consensus safety standard, ASTM F-1816 Standard Consumer Safety Specification for Drawstrings on Children's Upper Outerwear. The ASTM standard took effect in June 1997.