Call to reduce fire risk from foam-filled furniture

Today the Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Hon Kris Faafoi, signed the product safety policy statement foam-filled furniture: Reducing the risk of fire-related harm from household furniture products.

The foam in an average 3-piece lounge suite has the combustible potential of 10 litres of fuel. This foam can catch fire at relatively low temperatures, and burn quickly and intensely. When the foam burns it can spread quickly through a home and increases risk of harm or death through burns and/or inhalation of toxic gases.

The policy statement issued by the Minister today aims to make sure that the industry is aware of the risks posed by foam-filled furniture (FFF) in a fire and what the government expects of it to reduce those risks – by manufacturing, sourcing and supplying more fire-safe foam-filled furniture products.

What can you do now?

It will take the industry time to respond. In the meantime we encourage homeowners to follow the advice from Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) and ensure that they have:

  • working smoke alarms, and
  • an escape plan.

Check out the 'At home' fire safety advice section on the FENZ website(external link).

More information about the Foam-filled furniture product safety policy statement.