Origins of the FQA

Every day, the safety of millions of people depends on tiny bits of metal that few people ever think about: fasteners.  Nuts, bolts and more hold together the cars that we drive, the bridges we cross, the airplanes we ride in, and much more.  Every day, our well-being depends on a wide variety of fasteners, which we assume will keep things in place.

However, our trust at times is unfortunately misplaced.  In the mid 1980’s, product failures brought to light the fact that not all fasteners on the market were performing as they were intended.  A two year study commenced shortly after this, with Congress leading an investigation into the industry that produces the machine screws and other fasteners used by manufacturers all over the country.    The results of the investigation were disheartening.  It was found that there were millions of mismarked, counterfeit, and just plain substandard fasteners in the market, many of which had been introduced via import.  The use of these unacceptable fasteners was a real threat to product safety and reliability.

Because of these findings, the Fastener Quality Act (FQA) was passed.  This act, signed by President Bush in 1990, was intended to protect the safety of the public by reducing the risk of fastener failure, from metric dowel pins to imperial screws and more.   The law was meant to regulate the enforcement and monitoring of the standards and labeling in the fastener industry.

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