Underwriters Laboratories Inc. announced that Restonic Mattress Corporation has become the first mattress manufacturer to receive UL certification for its products in accordance with the open-flame resistant requirements of the California Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation’s Technical Bulletin (TB 603).
The new law becomes effective on Jan. 1, 2005, and requires both manufacturers and retailers selling mattresses, box springs or futons in California to validate that their products comply with the new requirements. Mattress manufacturers or retailers selling products that do not meet the standard’s requirements risk citations, fines, orders to withhold products from sale and license revocation. UL is the only third-party product-safety testing organization that provides TB 603 certification to mattress manufacturers and their suppliers.
“Restonic is proud to achieve UL certification in compliance with California’s TB 603,” said Kevin L. Toman, president and CEO, Restonic Mattress Corporation. “Everyone recognizes the integrity and the reputation of UL, and for Restonic to have UL certify our products shows forward thinking and industry leadership.”
The U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) reports that each year, an estimated 20,800 fires are attributed to mattress/bedding fires. These fires cause 2,200 injuries, 380 fatalities and $104 million in property loss.
TB 603 was designed to save lives by increasing a mattress’s resistance to open-flame ignition and reducing the magnitude of any resulting fire. In recent years, open-flame ignition sources such as candles, lighters and matches have become an increasingly common cause of mattress fires.
The American Home Fire Safety Act, now before the U.S. Congress, contains similar requirements that address open-flame flammability of mattresses, upholstered furniture, bedding and candles. In addition, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is expected to announce its action on mattress flammability this fall.
“UL applauds California for its leadership in establishing these requirements,” said Tom Chapin, general manager of UL’s Fire Safety Strategic Business Unit. “Our certification program meets and exceeds the requirements put forth by the California Bureau of Home Furnishings and Thermal Insulation. We also look forward to working with the CPSC as they roll out their proposal for a Federal standard on mattresses later on this year.”
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