Archived News Article
Furniture Industry Research Association share updates to standards and other key matters - Jan - 2020
The Furniture Industry Research Association has published its latest summary of standards. One of the main headlines from the update is the publication of a new standard: BS EN 1130: 2019 Children’s furniture. Cribs. Safety requirements and test methods. The UK did not support the introduction of the new standard, feeling that not all the risks presented by bedside sleepers had been fully addressed.
Despite the concerns raised by the UK the standard was agreed, and now BS EN 1130: 2019 replaces the previous two part 1996 version and contains significant changes to the document structure, updates and additions to test methods, introduces requirements and test methods for suspended cribs and bedside sleepers and has the addition of requirements for chemical and thermal hazards.
The Research Association’s Standards Update also includes a focus on international standards, predominantly American standards, as this is one market which may be more appealing post-Brexit. As such, ANSI/BIFMA X5.4 - 2012 Lounge Seating is under revision under a new title; ‘Public and Lounge Seating’. BIFMA G1-2013 Ergonomics Guideline for Furniture Used in Office Work Spaces Designed for Computer Use is now 6 years old and proposals for revision have been made, including becoming an ANSI Standard. ANSI/BIFMA X5.5 - 2014 Desk Products is expected to be subject to significant test changes, due to this ANSI/SOHO S6.5-2008 (R2013) Small Office/Home Office Furniture – Tests is likely to be revised.
Also worth noting is a key change to AB-2998 Consumer products: flame retardant materials, which as of January 1 2020 prohibits retardant chemicals in upholstered furniture. Further details are carried in the Standards Update and available to all members of the Furniture Industry Research Association.
Work will shortly start to standardise specifications for foams and mattresses used for testing. A technical report will also be published offering advice on how to increase test loads to simulate users with a body weight in excess of 110 Kg. A new test method is also being worked for hanging seats, including hammocks; suspended seats with a single support point and suspended seats with multiple support points.
Other sections in the Standards Update include non-domestic tables and desks / office desks, non-domestic / office seating, non-domestic / office storage, educational furniture, laboratory furniture, beds and mattresses, domestic seating, domestic tables, domestic storage, kitchens, outdoor furniture, children’s furniture, flammability, hardware, surface finishes and finally motorised furniture.
The latest Quarterly Standards Report is available to members of the Furniture Industry Research Association here.
The next Quarterly Standards Report is due in early spring. In the interim, www.fira.co.uk/news will carry updates on standards as and when available to support members.