EFRA European Flame Retardant Association

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Transcript EFRA European Flame Retardant Association

European Flame Retardant
EBCA Meeting 26 November 2010
Dr Veronique Steukers
Introduction to EFRA & Flame Retardants
Where are Flame Retardants used?
How do Flame retardants work?
Key recommendations
Copyright EFRA © 2010
EFRA Members 2010
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EFRA: Vision and Mission
To be the trustworthy voice of the
flame retardant industry in Europe
 To provide a platform for producers of different FR
 To express a unified industry perspective
 To promote different flame retardant technologies
 To work on common regulatory and scientific challenges
 To exchange new developments and solutions with
stakeholders in our value chain
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EFRA: New Publications
“Flame Retardants for a changing
Society”, Gives a broad overview about the
variety of flame retardants usages in everyday
life, and their contribution to the tremendous
evolutions of consumer products, construction
products and transports over the past few
“Keeping fire in check in Electrical and Electronic Devices” Gives a
deep insight into the usage of flame retardants in electrical and electronic
devices. Today’s electronic devices are fast, light and incredible pieces of
design. They were partly made possible by the use of lighter and more
diverse plastics. They also pose specific fire safety and technical challenges,
which need very specific answers.
Brochures can be downloaded at www.flameretardants.eu
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What are Flame Retardants?
 Wide range of chemicals, with
various compositions and properties
 «Flame-retardant» is a function,
not based on any chemical reality
 Based on various natural elements
 With various properties related to
fire-safety, human health and
 No link between the elemental
content and the properties can be
 Subject to European legislation on
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Where are flame retardants used?
* Plastics
* Textiles
* Foams and fillings (cushions, feathers, wool …)
* Insulation (buildings, fridges, sound proofing …)
* Electrical cables, circuit boards …
* Wood and timber, chipboard, panelling
-> Electrical goods, clothing, curtains, bedding, building materials,
carpets and floorings, toys, cars, trains, planes, furniture,
decorations …where there are fire safety requirements.
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Increasing fire risks for consumers
 The use of traditional materials such as wood, metal & animal hair or
hides have been replaced by the use of new materials such as
plastics, composites, foams & fire-based fillings
 Increasing power, plus miniaturisation, of electronics (dependency on
cooling fans), widespread use of standby function
 Increasing use of textiles, furnishings, foams
 Integration of electronics into furnishings, toys, decorations …
A LCD TV contains an average of 8,4kg of plastic
which without the application of FRs would be
equivalent to roughly 6 litres of gasoline in terms of
potential heat release.
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Increasing fire risks for consumers
Salton Inc. Recalls Electric Toasters Due to Fire Hazard
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with the firm named
below, today announced a voluntary recall of the following consumer product. Consumers should stop using
recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed.
CPSC, Bilt-Safe Technologies Announce Recall of Electric Blankets
In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Bilt-Safe Technologies Inc., of Erwin, Tenn. is
voluntarily recalling 60,000 (including 13,720 sold to consumers) electric blankets. When the temperature controller on the
blanket is reset multiple times or the blanket is folded or covered with additional blankets, the blanket can overheat. This can
result in smoldering and melting, posing a burn hazard to consumers.
Despite vastly improved federal mattress flammability standards in recent years, 150 to 200 people still die each year due to small, open flame
mattress and bedding fires. Between 1999 and 2003, 76,400 home fires were started on or around mattresses. As a result of those fires, 1,890
deaths, 8,820 injuries, and $1.603 billion in property damage resulted. Seventy four percent of these mattress fires were caused by ignition from
smoking materials such as cigarettes.
Source: Consumerwatch.com
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How do Flame retardants work?
 FRs either prohibit the start of a fire or
reduce the speed of the fire
 FRs can extend the escape time by a factor 10
or even more
 FRs reduce the number of fire casualties &
The European Commission has estimated that
there has been a 20% reduction in fire deaths
as a direct result of the use of FRs over 10
years. (Flame Retardants, DG Environment Video 2000, cited by AEA
Technology, January 2001)
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FR sofa versus non-FR sofa
after 11 minutes
flame retarded
non flame retarded
(EU standard)
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acc. to UK-standard
after 11 minutes
flame retarded
non flame retarded
(EU standard)
acc. to UK-standard
Source: http://www.bhfti.ca.gov/burn_comparison.pdf
Key recommendations
• public behaviour and response education
after 11 minutes
• promote domestic
smoke alarm & sprinkler installation
• push to make critical consumer goods fire safe:
-> obligatory (legislation, norms)
-> company responsibility
Fire fighters and burn associations have a key role:
• competent
• credible
flame retarded
non flame retarded
• legitimate (EU
to both
acc. to UK-standard
regulators and the public
Copyright EFRA © 2010
EFRA (The European Flame Retardants Association) brings together
the major companies which manufacture or market flame retardants in
Europe. EFRA covers all types of flame retardants: chemicals based on
bromine, phosphorus, nitrogen and inorganic compounds.
EFRA is a sector group of Cefic, the European Chemical Industry Council.
Veronique Steukers
Albemarle Europe
+32 10 48 17 15
[email protected]
Copyright EFRA © 2010
Reproduction is authorised with the written
consent of EFRA, provided that the source is
mentioned and acknowledged. EFRA claims no
copyright on any official document or in the public
domain. Copyright of third party material in this
document must also be respected.