Whether fires break out in offices, hotels or hospitals, people need to be brought to a place of safety quickly and the spread of the fire effectively stopped at the same time.
While regulations on escape and rescue routes are precise and clear for each type of building and its intended purpose, it’s not always easy to say what the right furniture is. It’s true that fire safety regulations are becoming increasingly more stringent, but regulations on contract furniture are usually not the standard demands that public tenders or construction projects financed by individuals make. In these cases, only the rating of building materials is quoted, which, for instance, need to be flame retardant. However, contract furnishings aren’t building materials. If a fire breaks out, they behave differently than materials that are not part of a composite. This is particularly the case where upholstered furniture is made of several materials. Even if each of the materials used, such as the covers, frames or upholstery foam, is classified as flame retardant, the fire behaviour and smoke development of the materials can have an influence on each other.
We’re providing some guidance in our fire safety brochure, which tells you everything you need to know about what standards apply to upholstered furniture, what international variations exist and how we can help improve fire safety.