Fire retardant ban rose from the ashes

After being dismissed in California’s legislation floor last year, the bill AB 706 was again revived although slightly amended in August 4 by its sponsor, Assemblyman Mark Leno (D-San Francisco).

This time, AB 706 does not outrightly proposed a ban on brominated (BFRs) and chlorinated fire retardants (CFRs) but instead laid the banning discretion to California’s Department of Toxic Substances Control.

The bill, however, will require the agency to look more closely into BFRs and CFRs. The bill will also require products containing 1% of more of the flame retardants to include a label that says they contain halogenated fire retardants.

In the end, the rewritten bill will probably arrive at the same conclusion as the original bill – banning halogenated flame retardants in California’s furniture and bedding products.

According to the advocacy group Citizens for Fire Safety (CFFSI), the amended bill also calls for the elimination of California’s current open flame standard testing in furniture to be replaced with a yet to be developed standard that has no set date for adoption by the US Consumer Product Safety Commission.

Who would want their furnitures and beddings without flame retardants? Sure they could look for healthier alternatives but until they find one or two that are proven effective, I’m sticking to the current versions and I don’t need the local government taking away my “safety blanket”. Good thing I don’t live in California!

By the way, I was unable to upload a video on a recent flammability test conducted by Southwest Research Institute (paid for by CFFSI) comparing a sofa with fire retardant and one without. I searched You Tube and found a similar test instead.



One Response to Fire retardant ban rose from the ashes

  1. Italian leather sofas 1 November, 2008 at 1:29 am #

    I really feel that furniture should be sold with certificates indicating the make of the materials used !

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