|View EO 12866 Meetings||Printer-Friendly Version Download RIN Data in XML|
|CPSC||RIN: 3041-AB35||Publication ID: Fall 2019|
|Title: Flammability Standard for Upholstered Furniture|
In October 2003, the Commission issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) to address the risk of fire associated with cigarette and small open-flame ignitions of upholstered furniture. The Commission published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) in March 2008, and received public comments. The Commission's proposed rule would require that upholstered furniture have cigarette-resistant fabrics or cigarette and open flame-resistant barriers. The proposed rule would not require flame-resistant chemicals in fabrics or fillings. Since the Commission published the NPRM, CPSC staff has conducted testing of upholstered furniture, using both full-scale furniture and bench-scale models, as proposed in the NPRM. In FY 2016, staff was directed to prepare a briefing package summarizing the feasibility of adopting California’s Technical Bulletin 117-2013 (TB 117-2013) as a mandatory standard. Staff submitted this briefing package to the Commission in September 2016 with staff suggestions to continue developing the ASTM and NFPA voluntary standards. In the FY 2017 Operating Plan, the Commission directed staff to work with the California Bureau of Electronic and Appliance Repair, Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation (BEARHFTI), as well as voluntary standards development organizations, to improve upon and further refine the technical aspects of TB 117-2013.
Currently, staff is working with voluntary standards organizations, both ASTM and NFPA, and BEARHFTI to evaluate new provisions and improve the existing consensus standards related to upholstered furniture flammability. In FY 2019, staff plans to prepare a status briefing package for the Commission on recent activities and present options for future efforts.
|Agency: Consumer Product Safety Commission(CPSC)||Priority: Economically Significant|
|RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda||Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Final Rule Stage|
|Major: Yes||Unfunded Mandates: No|
|EO 13771 Designation: Independent agency|
|CFR Citation: 16 CFR 1634|
|Legal Authority: 15 U.S.C. 1193 5 U.S.C. 801|
Statement of Need:
From 2013 to 2015, an annual average of approximately 4,500 residential fires in which upholstered furniture was the first item to ignite resulted in an estimated 480 deaths, 700 civilian injuries, and about $244.0 million in property damage that could be addressed by a flammability standard. The total annual societal cost attributable to these upholstered furniture fire losses was more than $4.5 billion for 2013 to 2015. This total includes fires ignited by small open-flame sources and cigarettes.
Summary of the Legal Basis:
Section 4 of the Flammable Fabrics Act (FFA) (15 U.S.C. 1193) authorizes the Commission to issue a flammability standard or other regulation for a product of interior furnishing if the Commission determines that such a standard is "needed to adequately protect the public against unreasonable risk of the occurrence of fire leading to death or personal injury, or significant property damage." The Commission's regulatory proceeding could result in several actions, one of which could be the development of a mandatory standard requiring that upholstered furniture sold in the United States meet mandatory requirements specified in the standard.
(1) The Commission could issue a mandatory flammability standard if the Commission finds that such a standard is needed to address an unreasonable risk of the occurrence of fire from ignition of upholstered furniture. (2) The Commission could issue mandatory requirements for labeling of upholstered furniture, in addition to, or as an alternative to, the requirements of a mandatory flammability standard. (3) The Commission could terminate the proceeding for development of a flammability standard and rely on voluntary standard(s) if voluntary standard(s) would adequately address the risk of fire, and substantial compliance with such a standard is likely to result.
Anticipated Costs and Benefits:
The estimated annual cost of imposing a mandatory standard to address ignition of upholstered furniture would depend upon the test requirements in the final rule and the steps manufacturers take to meet those requirements. Depending on the test requirements, a standard may reduce upholstered furniture-related fire losses, the annual societal cost of which was more than $4.2 billion for 2011 to 2014. Thus, the potential benefits of a mandatory standard to address the risk of ignition of upholstered furniture could be significant, even if the standard did not prevent all such fires.
The estimated average annual cost to society from residential fires associated with upholstered furniture was $4.2 billion for 2011 to 2014. Societal costs associated with upholstered furniture fires are among the highest associated with any product subject to the Commission's authority. A standard has the potential to reduce these societal costs.
|Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Yes||Government Levels Affected: Undetermined|
|Small Entities Affected: Businesses||Federalism: Undetermined|
|Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes|
|International Impacts: This regulatory action will be likely to have international trade and investment effects, or otherwise be of international interest.|
|RIN Data Printed in the FR: Yes|
Project Manager, Directorate for Laboratory Sciences
Consumer Product Safety Commission
National Product Testing and Evaluation Center, 5 Research Place,
Rockville, MD 20850