In just a few days time, it will be illegal to sell the majority of small ATVs and motorcycles that are primarily intended for children under the age of 12. Why? According to the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 (CPSIA), any product that contains more than 600 ppm of lead in "substrate material" is hazardous and cannot be sold in the United States. While the CPSIA was drafted primarily in response to the growing concern of lead paint used on small toys, it has recently been pointed out that the legislation will also prohibit the sale of children's powersports products that contain trace amounts of lead in parts like tire valves and internal engine components.
In response to heavy opposition from both manufacturers and dealerships, the CPSC has granted an additional year to ensure that the proper testing is done on each product, but the vehicles will still be illegal to sell beginning on February 10, 2009. Similar legislation already exists in Europe, along with an exemption for the powersports industry.
Somehow, we doubt that the seemingly minimal possibility of lead poisoning is the biggest safety concern for parents who purchase off-road vehicles for their children. Thanks for the tip, Andy!