15 Oct 2010
UK FFR Aligned – Official!
With effect from the 1st October 2010, the UK Furniture & Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations were amended to substitute the test cover fabric specification to be used in schedules 1 and 3.
In recent years the specified FR polyester fabric used during the testing of upholstery flammability had become unobtainable. In its place a substitute has been used which did not fully comply with the specification in the regulations and all test reports issued under these regulations carried a rider which made true compliance difficult and prosecution of non-compliant materials equally difficult.
After much discussion, the regulations have been amended to specify the alternative FR polyester fabric and so hereafter no such caveat will be added to the test report and true compliance or non-compliance can be determined.
Consumer Minister Edward Davey said:
“These changes will help more effective enforcement by Trading Standards so that consumers will be better protected from potentially unsafe furniture.”
The amendments to the regulations are summarised as follows, published as Statutory Instrument 2010 No. 2205
Amendment of the Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988
1. The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 are amended as follows.
2. For each of—
a. paragraph 2 of Schedule 1 Part I (Ignitability test for polyurethane foam in slab or cushion form),
b. paragraph 2 of Schedule 1 Part II (Ignitability test for polyurethane foam in crumb form), and
c. paragraph 2 of Schedule 1 Part III (Ignitability test for latex rubber foam).
3. For paragraph 3 of Schedule 3 (Ignition resistance test for interliner), substitute—
- “The fabric shall be made of 100 per cent flame retardant polyester fibre.
- The construction of the fabric shall be woven to a plain weave.
- The yarn in the warp shall be spun to a linear density of 37 tex plus or minus 10 per cent.
- The yarn in the weft shall be spun to a linear density of 100 tex plus or minus 10 per cent.
- The fabric shall be scoured and heat set.
The fabric shall be woven so as to have a finished fabric construction of—
a. 20.5 plus or minus 1 yarn threads per centimetre in the warp and
b. 12.5 plus or minus 1 yarn threads per centimetre in the weft.
Its mass shall be 220 grammes per square metre plus or minus 5 per cent”.
The amendment and explanatory documents can be accessed here.