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Don’t be Spooked! Standards Ensure a Safe and Fun Halloween

New York  October 31, 2008


Tonight, children across the country will suit up as witches, superheroes, and princesses and head out into the neighborhood in search of sweets. As Americans celebrate Halloween, standards are in place to ensure a memorable and safe holiday for all.

Whether in the presence of a child disguised as a pirate or fun-loving adults dressed as a celebrity couple, it’s important to capture the moment with a photograph. International standards have been in place for many years that ensure the proper functioning of cameras so that photos turn out clear and bright every time. ISO 12232:2006, Photography -- Digital still cameras -- Determination of exposure index, ISO speed ratings, standard output sensitivity, and recommended exposure index was developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) to provide guidelines for digital cameras that are manufactured and sold across the globe. For photographs taken on Halloween night, this standard provides an index that will guide the long exposure needed to capture these dark and mysterious images.

ISO 12232:2006 was developed by Technical Committee (TC) 42, Photography. The U.S. holds the chairmanship and the secretariat of TC 42. Kenneth Parulski of the Eastman Kodak Company serves as chairman, and the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) has delegated secretariat duties to the International Imaging Industry Association (I3A). An ANSI member and accredited standards developer, I3A also serves as the ANSI-accredited Technical Advisory Group (TAG) administrator to TC 42.

When trick-or-treating after the sun goes down, parents should always accompany their children with the aid of a flashlight. The pathways of light lead children safely up and down driveways and porches, avoiding potential trips and falls as they visit every door in the neighborhood. Many elements of a typical flashlight have been developed with the help of standards, including the battery.

The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) has developed IEC 60086-1 Ed. 10.0 b:2007, Primary batteries - Part 1: General to standardize many aspects of common batteries, including their electrochemical system, dimensions, nomenclature, terminal configurations, markings, test methods, typical performance, safety, and environmental aspects. With these standards in place, the proper sized battery can be relied upon to keep the flashlight lit well into the evening.

IEC 60086-1 was developed by TC 35, Primary Cells and Batteries. The U.S. holds the chairmanship of this committee, with Michael Babiak of Energizer serving as chairman. The United States National Committee (USNC)-approved TAG administrator for this TC is the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA), an ANSI member and accredited standards developer.

Another crucial part of the flashlight is the light bulb. IESNA LM-49-01, Life Testing of General Lighting Incandescent Filament Lamps was created by the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES), an ANSI member and accredited standards developer, to describe the procedures by which incandescent lamps can be operated. This important standard guides the life expectancy of a light bulb, ensuring that Halloween enthusiasts won’t be left in the dark.

From cameras that capture the fun times to flashlights that assure safety, standards are an important part of every Halloween celebration. For more Halloween tips, including information about flame resistant costumes and light reflectors for clothing, visit the ANSI Media Tip on Halloween.


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