Updates on Federal Rules on Flammability of Furniture
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Updates on Federal Rules on Flammability of Furniture

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Summary of CPSC rules regarding flammability of furniture

Summary of CPSC rules regarding flammability of furniture

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  • Good afternoon, I will providing you all an overview of our recent technical work on developing an upholstered furniture flammability standard.In 2008, we published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking – proposed 16 CFR part 1634)The objectives of the proposed standard wasReduce smoldering ignited firesPrevent the transition from smoldering to flaming combustionMinimize reliance on FR chemical additivesReduce fire risk at a reasonable cost
  • Good afternoon, I will providing you all an overview of our recent technical work on developing an upholstered furniture flammability standard.In 2008, we published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking – proposed 16 CFR part 1634)The objectives of the proposed standard was were to:Reduce smoldering ignited firesPrevent the transition from smoldering to flaming combustionMinimize reliance on FR chemical additivesReduce fire risk at a reasonable cost
  • After publication of the NPR, we conducted a validation test program to assess the effectiveness of the standard We pursued development of a standard reference foam to reduce variability of test results
  • After publication of the NPR, we conducted a validation test program to assess the effectiveness of the standard We pursued development of a standard reference foam to reduce variability of test results
  • The validation tests involved testing cover fabrics that passed bench scale testing requirements (Type 1) and fire barriers (Type 2).These materials were used to construct full scale furniture with the exception of standard fabrics and standard foam. The Type 1 chairs were tested with smoldering ignition sources and the Type II chairs were tested with smoldering and open flame open flame ignition sources.
  • We noted the materials when tested in bench scale had different results in previous tests.Cover fabrics did not show a difference in expected smoldering performance.Presence of a fire barrier did not protect underlying foam substrate from smoldering.The foam exhibited different smoldering propensity from previous foam samples. This revealed the need for a consistent smoldering Standard Reference Material.
  • Chairs were constructed of the same materials as bench-scale tests. Fire barriers were expected to inhibit smoldering ignition of the internal foam.The fire barriers did not consistently protect against smoldering ignitions.Chairs constructed with fire barriers demonstrated a considerable amount of smoldering.
  • The bench-scale, open-flame tests of the fire barrier showed that the barrier was able to delay ignition of the foam, as previously observed.The performance of fire barriers, when exposed to an open-flame ignition source, did indicate that the fire barrier was successful in reducing fire severity.
  • Bench-scale performance should predict full-scale furniture performance; behavior in both scales should be similar qualitatively.Smoldering ignition bench-scale performance did not demonstrate an adequate prediction of real furniture flammability performance, in this test series.Open-flame ignition bench-scale qualification tests for fire barriers results in improvement in full-scale fire performance.
  • Objective: maximize repeatability, minimize variability of test resultsSRM 1196 cigarette incorporated into mattress rule (16 CFR Part 1632) in 2011SRM foam development completed in 2012No standard reference fabric has been developed or identified specifically for NPR.
  • Conduct further testing with standard materialsEngage ASTM E-5 on potential revisions to ASTM E 1353Monitor revisions to California TB-117Incorporate necessary changes to regulatory approach
  • Conduct further testing with standard materialsEngage ASTM E-5 on potential revisions to ASTM E 1353Monitor revisions to California TB-117Incorporate necessary changes to regulatory approach

Updates on Federal Rules on Flammability of Furniture Presentation Transcript

  • 1. U.S. Consumer Product Safety CommissionOverview of the Commission’s Recent Activities onFurniture Flammability Rulemaking*April 25, 2013CPSC Upholstered Furniture Fire Safety Technology Meeting5 Research Place, Rockville, MDFor further information contactRik Khanna, Project Manager301-987-2058 rkhanna@cpsc.gov* This information was prepared by the CPSC staff; it has not be been reviewed or approved by, and does not necessarily represent theviews of, the Commission.
  • 2. Upholstered Furniture Fire Risk National fire loss estimates (2008-2010) reportedupholstered furniture as first item ignited inestimated annual average of 5,300 residential firesattended by fire services during that period. Fires resulted in estimated average of 450 deaths,810 injuries, and $309 million in property loss eachyear. Once furniture ignites, it contains enough fuel thatfire can spread very quickly once upholstery fillingmaterials start to burn.
  • 3. CPSC Proposed Rule NPR published in March 2008□ 73 Fed. Reg. 11702 (March 4, 2008) Objectives:□ Address standard’s target risk: smoldering ignitedfires that cause most addressable fire deaths andinjuries□ Prevent transition from smoldering to flamingcombustion□ Minimize reliance on FR chemical additives infabrics and filling materials□ Reduce fire risk at reasonable cost
  • 4. Summary of NPR Objectives Proposed Standard establishes 2 possibleapproaches Furniture can have either:□ Upholstery cover material that complies with theprescribed smoldering ignition test ( “Type I” furniture); or□ Interior fire barrier that complies with specified smolderingand small open-flame ignition tests (“Type II” furniture). Does not rely on FR additives to achievecompliance
  • 5. Post – NPR Technical Work Validation Test Program – Bench and Full-Scale□ Smoldering Ignition□ Open-Flame Ignition Standard Reference Foam Development□ Reduce Variability
  • 6. Validation Tests Conducted with Type I cover fabrics andType II fire barriers that met criteria ofproposed standard in bench-scale testing Bench-scale tests used same materials asfull-scale tests; no standard foam or fabricwas used Smoldering and open-flame ignitionsource tests were conducted.
  • 7. Smoldering Ignition Tests: Bench-Scale Materials in bench-scale tests did not behaveas previously observed. Cover fabrics did not show difference insmoldering as expected. Presence of fire barrier did not show apractical difference in smoldering ofunderlying foam. Foam seemed to be different than previouslypurchased foam, potentially affecting results.□ Revealed need for an SRM foam.
  • 8. Smoldering Ignition Tests: Full-Scale Chairs constructed of same materials asbench-scale tests. Fire barriers expected to inhibit smolderingignition of internal foam. Fire barriers did not consistently protectagainst smoldering ignitions.□ Chairs constructed with fire barriersdemonstrated considerable amount ofsmoldering.
  • 9. Example of Smoldering Ignition TestsWithout BarrierNon-FR FoamWith BarrierNon-FR Foam
  • 10. Open-Flame Ignition Tests:Bench- and Full-Scale Bench-scale tests showed fire barriersable to delay ignition of foam, aspreviously observed. Full-scale tests showed that fire barrierswere successful in reducing fire severity.
  • 11. Example of Open-Flame Ignition TestsWithout BarrierNon-FR foam@ 4 minutesWithout BarrierFR foam@ 4 minutesWith BarrierNon-FR foam@ 4 minutesWith BarrierFR foam@ 4 minutes
  • 12. Validation Tests - Conclusions Bench-scale performance behavior in bothscales should be similar qualitatively. Smoldering ignition bench-scale performancedid not demonstrate adequate prediction ofreal furniture flammability performance forType I and Type II chairs, in this test series. Open-flame ignition, bench-scale qualificationtests for fire barriers (Type II) results inimprovement in full-scale fire performance.
  • 13. Standard Test Materials Objective: maximize repeatability, minimizevariability of test results SRM 1196 cigarette incorporated intomattress rule (16 CFR Part 1632) in 2011 SRM foam characterization in 2012
  • 14. Ongoing Work Conduct further testing with standardmaterials Engage ASTM E05 on potential revisions toASTM E1353 Monitor revisions to California TB-117 Issued CPSC Federal Register notice andhost Furniture Fire Safety TechnologyMeeting
  • 15. Furniture Fire Safety Technology Meetingand Request for Comments April 25 - Fire Safety Technology Meeting□ Focus on current technologies and anticipated progresson future fire barrier technologies and other options toreduce the fire hazard posed by residential upholsteredfurniture.□ http://www.cpsc.gov/cgi-bin/epi/epifurnituremtg.aspx Request for Comments□ Invite interested parties to submit comments related tothe meeting or possible change in regulatory approachusing fire barriers□ Comments due July 1, 2013
  • 16. U.S. Consumer Product Safety CommissionOverview of the Commission’s Recent Activities onFurniture Flammability Rulemaking*April 25, 2013CPSC Upholstered Furniture Fire Safety Technology Meeting5 Research Place, Rockville, MDFor further information contactRik Khanna, Project Manager301-987-2058 rkhanna@cpsc.gov* This information was prepared by the CPSC staff; it has not be been reviewed or approved by, and does not necessarily represent theviews of, the Commission.