Why has it appeared to change re flammable clothing

I noticed a tweet from CHOICE today

" #ImOldEnoughToRememberWhen it wasn’t illegal to produce and sell flammable children’s clothing - after 9 years of @choiceaustralia campaigning, these products were finally banned in 1977."

The number of Recalls currently being made about Clothing that doesn’t have the fire hazard tag attached spurred me in one to comment as to why they they didn’t make non flammable clothing. Has there been a resurgence of these flammable clothes being made? If they are banned why does clothing that is a fire hazard then have to be labelled and why are they fire hazards if they aren’t flammable?

I just don’t really understand all the ins and outs of this…it just seems topsy turvy to me that they aren’t flammable so aren’t banned but they are a fire hazard so need to be labelled???

@BrendanMays/@ajohnson Can someone at CHOICE help clarify this all for me/us?


Hi @grahroll,

Great question! It’s certainly a concern to see the amount of children’s pyjama recalls coming through.

In today’s tweet, we were referring to the first safety standard legislation that went through in 1977 (due to 9 years of Choice’s hard work) which banned nightwear made from chenille and molleton. At the time ‘Children’s nightwear made from flannelette, winceyette, cotton and brushed rayon (unless of a close-fitting design) will also be banned from sale in NSW shortly.’
As well as fabric, the design of long, loose-fitting nightgowns or nighties was problematic as they effectively acted as a chimney, funnelling the flames rapidly upwards. You can see this in our 1967 test, (terrifyingly) the entire nightie was alight within 90 seconds.

Although highly flammable fabrics have been banned, warning labels are required to protect against potential burns from fabric which could pose a fire risk or hazard.
In 1977 this is how warning labels were applied to children’s pyjamas:

The Labelling and safety standards remain largely the same but have expanded to include things like sleep suits and other products that pose a risk.
The leballing categories are as follows:

Category 1

Garments made from fabric and trims that pass low flammability tests. Examples include wool, some synthetics and some heavy cottons.

Category 2

Garments that are close fitting, such as pyjamas, do not ignite or burn as readily. As a result, they may be made from more flammable fabrics. Garment measurements apply according to size.

Category 3

Babies’ all-in-ones have their own category because there is little difference between daywear and nightwear. This category covers all-in-one garments in sizes 00–2, such as jumpsuits and rompers. It applies to garments made mostly from knitted fabrics and where the close-fitting portion of the garment occupies 80% or more of the total surface area of the garment.

Category 4

Applies to garments that do not fit categories 1, 2 or 3 but still meet some fabric, size and burning test requirements.

Hope that clarifies the issue and gives our tweet a bit of context :slight_smile:


Thank you for the reply. It would seem from your response that many other fabrics were in line for removal but has that happened or is it still the same situation as back then? I am sure I have seen flannelette pj’s for children recently.


Could be a candidate for cross posting in recalls, but this shows how impotent our laws are, that only apply to those who obey them. 3rd time and still playing.