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CPSC issues upholstery flammability rule   

Washington – The Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a proposed rule Tuesday detailing how upholstered furniture manufacturers must protect their products against catching fire.

The agency asked for comments in response to the proposal by May 19. Provisions of the proposed rule were detailed in a 51-page document published yesterday in the Federal Register.

CPSC officials issued the flammability proposal just five weeks after they said they were moving closer to adopting a standard aimed at slowing or preventing the spread and intensity of upholstered furniture fires.

Under the proposal, manufacturers could meet the standard by using smolder-resistant cover fabrics or interior fire-resistant barriers to protect the furniture's filling material, the primary fuel in an upholstered furniture fire.

CPSC officials said earlier that their objective is to reduce the risk of upholstered furniture fire without requiring the use of fire-retardant chemicals. They estimated that once fully effective, the proposed standard would prevent an estimated 100 deaths each year.

To read a copy of the rule on the CPSC’s website, click here (pdf).

(Reported by HTT sister publication Furniture Today.)

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