Australia | Electric & Electronic

New safety standard for button and coin cell batteries

Australia has announced its intention to implement the international standard for button and coin cell batteries which contains, among others, new marking requirements

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission (ACCC) published for comments draft Requirements for safety and information standards for consumer goods containing button batteries and button batteries themselves. Such batteries may be very dangerous, for example if swallowed. The number of serious injuries or deaths as a result of button batteries has increased nine-fold in the last decade.

Therefore, according to the international standard IEC 62368-1: 2018 Audio/video, information and communication technology equipment button cell batteries should be marked with warning statements and warning symbols. Depending on the character of the battery or the product containing it, there should be, among others, an alert word (e.g. DANGER or WARNING), an internationally recognised “keep out of reach of children” symbol and a statement that a battery can cause severe or fatal injuries.

Australia decided now to transpose these requirements (and others, such as compliance testing) into its national standards. An 18-months transition period is planned from the entry into force of the instrument.

Comments on the draft Requirements can be provided until 29 November 2020.

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