Release date: May 19, 1976
Release number: 76-031

Release Details

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission announced today plans for a volunteer Consumer Deputy program beginning June 7 to alert bicycle retailers to the new bicycle regulations which became effective May 11, 1976.

The first task of the Consumer Deputies in the program planned by the Commission is to alert retailers to the new regulations and what they involve.

The regulations were drawn up to help curb the estimated 476,813 bicycle-related injuries that are treated each year in hospital emergency rooms.

The bicycle regulations were issued under the Federal Hazardous Substances Act (FHSA) . They include requirements for reflectors, minimum braking, reduction in exposure to sharp edges and points, fork and wheel strength, assembly instructions and labeling. Bicycles failing to comply with the requirements offered for sale after the effective date are considered banned, and manufacturers, distributors, and retailers are required to repurchase them from the persons who purchased bicycles that fail to comply.

The Commission already has reached a large number of bicycle sales outlets with information about the regulations, and the Consumer Deputy program is aimed at augmenting this effort. Deputies will focus on bicycle sales sections in department, discount, drug and hardware stores.

Deputies will be given special training for the program and will carry with them information packets which include a fact sheet on the regulations, questions and answers about the regulations, and a brochure outlining procedures in the event repurchases of noncomplying bicycles are required. The Deputies will identify themselves with letters of introduction.

The Commission said a possible second phase for the Consumer Deputy program may involve follow-up surveys to assist the Commission in monitoring the repurchase of banned bicycles, if that becomes necessary.

Consumer Deputies will report to the Commission's 13 Area Offices. Consumer Deputy programs have been conducted in the past in connection with Christmas tree lights, children's flame-retardant sleepwear, poison prevention packaging and toy safety campaigns.

For further information on the Consumer Deputy program or the bicycle regulations, call the Commission's toll-free Hotline: 800/638-2772.

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