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Publication numberUS3853237 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateDec 10, 1974
Filing dateNov 16, 1972
Priority dateNov 16, 1972
Also published asCA1016107A1
Publication numberUS 3853237 A, US 3853237A, US-A-3853237, US3853237 A, US3853237A
InventorsMarchant P
Original AssigneeEthyl Dev Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Vial or container with safety closure
US 3853237 A
Abstract
A container such as a vial for medicines, and a one-piece safety closure therefor. The container is provided with an annular, outwardly extending shoulder or lip adjacent the upper end of the open neck. A one-piece closure, preferably molded from plastic material, has a top wall which includes a central circular section, a downwardly sloping conical section, and an annular flat section which integrally connects to a depending cylindrical skirt section. The interior sidewall of the skirt is provided with an inwardly projecting, preferably beveled, shoulder or lip which, when pressed on the lip or shoulder of the container, snaps over and provides solid engagement of the closure cap with the container. The cap can be removed by applying pressure with one's thumb to the central section while lifting the peripheral skirt with one's fingers.
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Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

United States Patent n91 Marchant I 1 Dec. 10, 1974 VIAL OR CONTAINER WITH SAFETY CLOSURE [75] Inventor: Paul A. Marchant, Kansas City, Mo.

[73] Assignee: Ethyl Development Corporation,

Kansas City, Mo.

[22] Filed: Nov. 16, 1972 [21] Appl. No.: 307,075

[52] U.S. Cl 215/224, 215/317, 220/60 R [51] Int. Cl. B65d 55/02, B65d 85/56, A6lj l/00 [58] Field of Search 215/9, 41, 46 R, 224, 317,

3,484,016 12/1969 Turner 220/60 A 3,758,000 9/1973 Mack 220/60 A X 3,782,575 l/l974 Braun 215/9 Prim ary ExaminerGeorge T. Hall Attorney, Agent, or Firm--D. L. Johnson; J. F. Sieberth; E. D. Mays [57] ABSTRACT A container such as a vial for medicines, and a onepiece safety closure therefor. The container is provided with an annular, outwardly extending shoulder or lip adjacent the upper end of the open neck. A onepiece closure, preferably molded from plastic material, has a top wall which includes a central circular section, a downwardly sloping conical section, and an annular flat section which integrally connects to a depending cylindrical skirt section. The interior sidewall of the skirt is provided with an inwardly projecting, preferably beveled, shoulder or lip which, when pressed on the lip or shoulder of the container, snaps over and provides solid engagement of the closure cap with the container. The cap can be removed by applying pressure with ones thumb to the central section while lifting the peripheral skirt with ones fingers.

In a second embodiment, a container, such as a vial, is provided with a second shoulder below and immediately adjacent to the upper or first shoulder on the vial. The second shoulder has a sloping undersurface and an annular, flat top surface which preferably makes abutment with the lower periphery of the cap skirt preventing engagement of ones fingers with the lower end of the skirt of the cap, except when the top of the cap is depressed.

6 Claims, 14 Drawing Figures Pmm, nan 1 man saw a or '3' VIAL OR CONTAINER WITH SAFETY CLOSURE BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION Efforts have been accelerated over the past few years to provide satisfactory childproof safety closures for containers used for toxic and dangerous substances such as medicines, insecticides, cleaners and other materials which could be harmful to a child if ingested. Provisions of the Poison PreventionPackaging Act of 1970 (Public Law 91-60l of Dec. 30, 1970) require that many substances be packaged in the near future in containers having childproof closures.

Many of the childproof closures developed to date suffer from undesirable features. Often, childproof container closures are designed wherein the parts forming the closure are so complex and complicated that it is not economically feasible to produce and use such closures on low-cost items such as small bottles of aspirin, cleaners and other low-cost commodities. Prior art safety closures often require such complicated movements and/or understanding of the operation that they cannot be conveniently removed by adults. Additionally, some closures require gripping forces or movements which are not convenient for aged people who most often are required to remove safety closures from medicine containers.

Thus, it is evident that there is a need for a simple, economical container, such as a vial for medicines, which is provided with a simple, cheap, one-piece, childproof safety closure.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION It is an object of the present invention to provide a container, such as a vial for medicines, having an improved safety closure.

It is another object of the present invention to provide a container and a safety'closure wherein the closure is simple in construction and economical to produce.

An additional object of the present invention is to provide a container having a safety closure which may be easily applied to and removed from the container by application of hand pressure.

A further object of the present invention is to provide a container with a safety closure which may be easily removed from the container by an adult, but is difficult or impossible to remove by a child.

The foregoing and other objects are provided for in a container and safety closure cap combination comprising a container having a generally cylindrical, open neck portion. The outer end of the neck is provided with an annular, outwardly projecting shoulder. A onepiece, flexible safety closure cap having a substantially truncated, conical top portion and agenerally cylindrical, integral skirt portion depending therefrom is attached to the container. The interior sidewall of the skirt provides an annular, inwardly projecting shoulder adjacent its lower end. The shoulder on the'skirt is adapted to be snapped over the shoulder on the outer end of the neck to lock the cap on the container.

The second embodiment of the invention is provided in a container having a cylindrical neck and having, in addition to the first shoulder at its upper end, a second shoulder immediately below the first shoulder, which second shoulder is provided with a sloping undersurface and a flat annular top surface.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS FIG. 1 is a broken, sectional, elevational view of a container and safety closure cap constructed in accor dance with the present invention;

FIG. 2 is a view similar to FIG. 1 showing the position of the cap when pressure is applied by the hand to remove the cap from the container;

FIG. 3 is an elevational view of a container constructed in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 4 is a top view of the container of FIG. 3;

FIG. 5 is a bottom view of the cap of FIG. 1 taken along the line 55;

FIG. 6 is a cross-sectional view of the cap of FIG. 5 taken along the line 6-6;

FIG. 7 is an elevational view of a second embodiment of a container constructed in accordance with the present invention;

FIG. 8 is a top view of the container of FIG. 7;

FIG. 9 is an elevational view of a cap for the container of FIG. 7;

FIG. 10 is a top view of the cap of FIG. 9;

FIG. 11 is a bottom view of the cap of FIG. 9;

FIG. 12 is a cross-sectional view of the cap of FIG. 11 taken along the line 12-l2;

FIG. 13 is a broken, sectional, elevational view of the container of FIG. 7 with the cap of FIG. 9 affixed thereto in the closed position; and

FIG. 14 is a view similar to FIG. 13 showing the position of the cap when pressure is applied by hand to remove the cap from the container.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENTS 1 Referring now to FIGS. l-6, the container and closure of the present invention include a container, which may be in the form of a vial, designated generally by the numeral 10. The container and closure system of the present invention may be utilized with containers other than vials, e.g., cans which have cylindrical, nonthreaded, open necks. The vial is provided with a cylindrical, open-ended neck portion 11 which has an outwardly extending annular shoulder 12 adjacent its upper end. The shoulder 12 is provided with a flat top surface 13, a downwardly and outwardly extending sidewall 14, and an annular, flat bottom wall 15.

Referring now to FIGS. 1, 2, 5 and 6, the container or vial is provided with a safety closure cap, designated generally by the numeral 16. The cap includes a top wall which consists of a circular central section 17 of relatively thick wall cross section. Attached to the central section is a downwardly sloping conical section 18 of relatively thin wall cross section. The conical section merges into a relatively thin wall, annular, flat section 19. Attached to the annular section 19 is a depending, cylindrical skirt section 20. The inner wall .of the skirt is provided with an inwardly projecting annular shoulder 21. The shoulder 21 is provided with a downwardly and outwardly sloping sidewall surface 22. This surface has the same slope and is of a design adapted to engage the sidewall surface 14 on the shoulder 12 of the vial to permit expansion of the skirt and snapping of the shoulder 22 over the shoulder 12 on the vial. The shoulder 22 is provided with an annular, flat top surface 23 which is adapted to engage in abutment with the flat bottom surface 15 of the shoulder 12 of the vial, as may be seen in FIG. 1. The inner wall of the conical portion 18 of the cap is provided with a plurality of spaced apart, radially extending reinforcing ribs 23. These ribs terminate short of the circular central section 17 of the cap and also short of the annular flat section 19. This arrangement of the ribs provides a weakened or compressible, flexible, annular section immediately adjacent to the circular central section 17 and adjacent to the annular flat section 19 of the cap to permit flexing of the cap for placing the cap on the container and removing it from the container, as seen in FIG. 2.

To apply the cap 16 to the container 10, the cap is taken in ones hand and pressure is applied to the central section 17 while lifting with ones fingers the annular skirt portion 20, and pressure is applied to the top to snap the cap over the bead or shoulder on the vial or container. To remove the cap, the same pressure is applied, as shown in FIG. 2, while pulling the skirt to disengage the shoulder 21 from the shoulder 12 of the vial.

Referring now to FIGS. 7-14, a second embodiment of the container of the present invention, designated generally by the reference numeral 24, is illustrated in the form of a vial, although it is to be understood that the container may take any form that is provided with a cylindrical neck. As'seen in FIG. 7, the container 24 has a cylindrical wall 25 and is provided with a first shoulder, designated generally by the numeral 26, at the upper end or open mouth of the container 24. The shoulder 26 is provided with a narrow, annular, flat top wall 27 as seen in FIG. 8, a downwardly and outwardly sloping sidewall 28, and'an annular, flat bottom wall 29. A second shoulder, designated generally by the reference numeral 30, is provided below the first shoulder 26. The second shoulder 30 includes an upwardly and outwardly sloping lower wall 31 which merges into the side of the container 25 at the lower end thereof. The second shoulder 30 is provided with a flat, annular top wall 32, as can be seen in FIG. 8.

The closure cap shown in FIGS. 9 -12 is constructed substantially the same as or is identical with the construction of the cap shown in FIGS. 1, 2, and 6, and the same reference numerals are applied to FIGS. 9-12 as used in the illustrations of the container cap in FIGS. 1, 2, 5 and 6.

Referring now to FIG. 13, the safety closure cap 16 is shown in the closed or sealed position on the container 24. In this position, the inner shoulder 21 provided on the cylindrical skirt section of the cap engages the underside 29 of the upper shoulder 26 of the container. The lower, annular, flat undersurface 33 of the cylindrical skirt section 20 of the cap is in substantial abutment with, or in very close proximity to, the annular upper surface 32 of the second shoulder 30. As seen in FIG. 13, it is preferred that the thickness of the skirt 20 of the cap 16 be substantially the same as the width of the annular shoulder 33 on the container 24 thereby providing a flush, continuous surface at the en'- gaging points of the shoulder 32 and annular skirt section 20 to prevent engagement of the lower edge or annular bottom surface 33 of the cap with the fingers of one's hand when the container cap 16 is in the closed position, as seen in FIG. 13.

Referring now to FIG. 14, to remove the cap 16 from the container 24, the container is gripped with the index and middle fingers of one's hand positioned on the sloping undersurface 31 of the second shoulder 30.

Ones thumb depresses the circular central section 17 of the container cap springing the cylindrical skirt outwardly to disengage the annular bottom surface 33 of the skirt from the upper surface 32 of the second shoulder 30, thereby permitting one's fingers to engage the annular bottom surface 33 of the cap and to remove the cap from the container.

The foregoing second embodiment of the invention provides an additional safety feature in that it will prevent children from being able to engage the undersurface of the container cap, thereby enhancing the safety features of the container closure assembly.

The container of the invention may be made of any material, such as metal or plastic, and may be in the form of a vial, bottle, can, or other suitable container. The cap or safety closure of the container is preferably made from a semi-rigid or reasonably flexible thermoplastic material, such as low density or high density polyethylene, polypropylene, plasticized polyvinyl chloride or other suitable, flexible plastic materials. The cap may be made by injection molding or compression molding, or any other suitable plastic forming technique.

From the foregoing, it is seen that the present invention provides a simple, one-piece closure system which may be produced from economical, readily available, thermoplastic materials and conveniently attached to the cylindrical neck of any type container providing a bead or shoulder thereon. The closure and container of the present invention are'particularly adapted for use with dry products, such as medicines, insecticides, scouring powders and other toxic materials, which will be required to utilize childproof safety closures. The closure of the present invention is readily placed on and removed from the container by an adult without special instructions or manual dexterity. It is believed that the closure system of the present invention is difficult, if not impossible, to open by a child of 5 years or under.

While the invention has been described with reference to the drawings, it is understood that the present description is only by way of example and that many variations and modifications of the construction of the present invention will be apparent to those skilled in the art. Therefore, the invention is to be limited only by the following claims.

What is claimed is:

1. In a container and safety closure cap therefor, the combination comprising:

a. a container having a generally cylindrical, open neck portion, the outer end of said neck being provided on its outer surface with an annular, outwardly projecting shoulder; and

b. a one-piece, flexible, thermoplastic safety closure cap having a circular central section, a downwardly sloping conical section attached to said central section, an annular flat section attached to the lower end of said conical section, and a generally cylindrical, solid, integral skirt portion attached at its upper end and depending from said annular flat section, the interior sidewall of said skirt providing a continuous, annular, inwardly projecting shoulder adjacent its lower end, which shoulder is adapted to be snapped over said outer end of said neck and to be in abutment with the underside of said shoulder provided on said neck.

2. In the container and safety closure cap of claim 1 wherein said safety closure cap is provided with a plurality of integral, radially extending ribs on the interior wall of the conical section of said cap.

3. In the container and safety closure cap of claim 1 wherein the outer surface of said shoulder on said neck and the inner surface of said shoulder on said cap are provided with matching downwardly and outwardly inclined surfaces which terminate in matching, engaging, annular, flat, downwardly and upwardly directed surfaces respectively.

4. In a container and safety closure cap therefor, the combination comprising:

a. a container having a generally cylindrical, open neck portion, the outer surface of the end of said neck being provided with a first annular, outwardly projecting shoulder and a second shoulder adjacent and below said first shoulder, said second shoulder having an upwardly and outwardly sloping lower surface and a flat, annular upper surface; and

b. a one-piece, flexible, thermoplastic, safety closure cap having a circular central section, a downwardly sloping conical section attached to said central section, said conical section being provided with a plurality of integral, radially extending ribs on its interior wall, an annular flat section attached to the lower end of said conical section, and a generally cylindrical, solid, integral skirt portion attached at its upper end and depending from said annular flat section, the interior sidewall of said skirt providing an annular, inwardly projecting shoulder adjacent its lower end, which shoulder is adapted to be snapped over said outer end of said neck and to be in abutment with the underside of said first shoulder provided on said neck, the lower end of said skirt being in close proximity to the upper surface of said second shoulder.

5. In the container and safety closure cap of claim 4 wherein the lower end of said skirt has a thickness substantially equal to the width of said upper surface of said second shoulder.

6. In the container of claim 1 wherein the wall of said central section has a thickness greater than the walls of said conical section and said annular fiat section.

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1739759 *Jun 6, 1927Dec 17, 1929American Can CoContainer closure
US3484016 *May 6, 1968Dec 16, 1969Basic Products Dev CoContainer and closure
US3758000 *May 14, 1971Sep 11, 1973Drackett CoSafety closure for containers
US3782575 *Mar 6, 1972Jan 1, 1974Braun TSafety closure
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3934745 *Sep 16, 1974Jan 27, 1976Lovell Walter CSafety bottle cap
US4153313 *May 5, 1978May 8, 1979Herman Miller, Inc.Storage locker
US5597096 *Feb 15, 1996Jan 28, 1997Dart Industries Inc.Shaker for condiments
US5740905 *Jun 6, 1996Apr 21, 1998Kilfoy; Kevin LeeKey ring attachable lighter holding shell with flexible holding flaps
US5808215 *Aug 12, 1996Sep 15, 1998Wayne CohenMusical shaker instrument
US5904252 *Apr 30, 1998May 18, 1999Piwowar; Daniel S.Collectors display
US6959829 *Nov 20, 2002Nov 1, 2005Graham Packaging Co. LpSelf-adjusting re-sealable spring center seal closure
US7225945Aug 15, 2005Jun 5, 2007Graham Packaging Company, LpSelf-adjusting re-sealable spring center closure
US7654411Jun 6, 2005Feb 2, 2010Berry Plastics CorporationContainer with lockable lid
US7901381 *Jan 21, 2005Mar 8, 2011Allergan, Inc.Implantable device fastening system and methods of use
US8317761Jun 14, 2011Nov 27, 2012Allergan, Inc.Methods of deploying an implantable injection port
US8409203Oct 28, 2009Apr 2, 2013Allergan, Inc.Implantable medical implants having fasteners
US8496614Jul 26, 2010Jul 30, 2013Allergan, Inc.Implantable device fastening system
US20120037654 *Oct 21, 2011Feb 16, 2012Helen Of Troy LimitedContainer lid
DE20020175U1 *Nov 28, 2000Apr 4, 2002Wulf & Co Emsa WerkSchalenförmiger Behälter
EP2537771A1 *Jun 20, 2012Dec 26, 2012Drug Plastics & Glass Company, Inc.Child resistant cap and container assembly
WO1985002164A1 *Nov 5, 1984May 23, 1985Jeffrey SandhausClosure
Classifications
U.S. Classification215/224, 215/317, 220/780, 220/281
International ClassificationB65D50/04, B65D50/00
Cooperative ClassificationB65D50/045
European ClassificationB65D50/04F