Our SEUL collection can be IMO (International Maritime Organization) certified
We have been working hard to improve the Flame Resistance of TEXSILK and are happy to announce that our SEUL collection can be IMO (International Maritime Organization) certified under ‘IMO MSC 307(88) Annex 1, Part 8 – Upholstered furniture’. IMO FR standards are required for all ships sailing in international waters.
What Is the IMO Certification?
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations, and its primary function is to maintain a comprehensive regulatory framework for shipping, including maritime safety and environmental concerns, legal matters, technical co-operation and maritime security. The IMO organized a set of international treaties designed to reduce the risk of fire, as well as aid in emergency response, aboard commercial ships. Some of the early components of the IMO standards were devised after several high-profile maritime disasters in the early 20th century, including most notably the sinking of the RMS Titanic in 1912.
Fire safety at sea is crucial and of the utmost importance. Therefore, IMO developed fire safety regulations that marine industries must pass if they want to be IMO Certified. These fire safety regulations are intended specifically for international commercial ships, such as cruise ships and commercial yachts. The IMO Certification is a fire test procedure for upholstered furniture to evaluate the flammability of a chosen fabric in seating applications in order to enhance the fire safety provisions on board commercial ships.
The IMO developed a Fire Test Procedure Code, which contains procedures for testing the flammability of constructions and materials used on ships. Specifically, Part 8 of the IMO FTP Code tests the flammability of upholstery fabrics used on board commercial ships.
How Is the Fabric Tested?
Here’s how the IMO fire safety test works: The fabric to be tested is paired with filling to create a small sofa with a 90-degree angle between the seat and the back of the sofa. A smoldering cigarette and match flame are the ignition sources used to test the fabric’s flammability. Two tests are performed with each ignition source. During the cigarette test, the fabric is not allowed to smolder in the preceding hour after the start of the test. For the match test, a gas flame equivalent to a lit match is held against the fabric for 20 seconds. No flaming is allowed to continue for more than two minutes after the removal of the flame.
If a fabric passes both these tests, it receives the IMO Certification. If it passes one test but not the other, or if it fails both tests, it is not considered IMO Certified. If it passes, the textile manufacturer is then permitted to display the prestigious IMO ship’s wheel emblem indicating they’ve passed this comprehensive fire safety test. These fabrics comply with standards required for use by the U.S. Coast Guard, Canada and Europe. An upholstery fabric that passes the IMO FTP Code is certified to be used in marine commercial applications.