Technical Bulletin — January 2012

January 2012

The California State Fire Marshal (CSFM) is updating its textile flammability document, Title 19, for the first time since 1993. A change to the pass/fail for the small scale test was drafted in 1993 and used by the industry ever since, but had not been vetted through the CSFM's official process.

A revision draft has already been prepared by a working group comprised of CSFM staff and industry members in 2008/09. The CSFM has created a Flame Retardant Advisory Committee to analyze this draft and make any changes before it is submitted for public comment. It was emphasized that this Flame Retardant Advisory Committee serves in an advisory capacity only; the CSFM has authority over final changes.

Summary of current work

The committee’s last meeting was November 2011. A December meeting was canceled and rescheduled for January 2012.

The committee was informed that a video demonstrating the Chimney Effect would be tabled until the next meeting due to problems in retrieving it.

Some key points from this meeting include:

  1. The issue of the intended use for the Flame-Retardant Product Transmittal and Certificate of Flame Resistance. The committee noted that the Flame-Retardant Product Transmittal form was not originally intended to be used for fabric, but through the years it has been altered to include fabric. A recommendation was made to remove fabric from the Transmittal form. This would mean that fabrics would only be required to have a Certificate of Flame Resistance. This forces the installer to have to use the fabric certificate alone, which our IFAI members are already doing. The committee agreed to begin work on any edits to the existing fabric certification form.
  2. It was requested that weathering be included for exceptions noted under Labeling in Article 8: Flameproofing Certification Labeling and Installation, to provide better clarity. However, the committee agreed that the current wording under exceptions should be kept.
  3. It was noted that Installation refers to the field testing. The clause allows the Fire Marshall to deny an installation if it appears to be being used in an unsafe way.


The CSFM staff is continuing to review the revision.

IFAI members will be informed so that we can comment as an industry, as well as individuals. Please feel free to forward this update to any party you feel might be interested.


The CSFM Flame Retardant Advisory Committee roster, meeting announcements and minutes are available here.

The next conference call/web meeting takes place on Wednesday, March 6, 2013, 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (Please note that this is Pacific time). Anyone is welcome to participate, but only advisory committee members have voting rights.