Fire Risk Assessment

Furniture provided in Holiday Cottages must comply with Fire Safety Requirements

The Furniture and Furnishings (Fire) (Safety) Regulations 1988 1 (as amended in 1989 2 and 1993 3) set levels of fire resistance for domestic upholstered furniture, furnishings and other products containing upholstery.

As part of a fire risk assessment, all of the furniture should be checked to ensure it complies.

The regulations apply to:

  • furniture intended for private use in a dwelling, including children's furniture
  • beds, head-boards of beds, mattresses (of any size)
  • sofa-beds, futons and other convertibles
  • nursery furniture
  • garden furniture which is suitable for use in a dwelling
  • furniture in new caravans
  • scatter cushions and seat pads
  • pillows
  • loose and stretch covers for furniture

The regulations DO NOT apply to

  • sleeping bags
  • bed-clothes (including duvets)
  • loose covers for mattresses
  • pillowcases
  • curtains
  • carpets

The Regulations DO NOT apply to furniture manufactured before 1st January 1950. This therefore exempts period or antique furniture.

What's the Hazard?

Due to the materials used in its construction, furniture built between 1950 and 1993 can catch fire more easily, burn very rapidly and give off dense black smoke and dangerous gasses such as cyanide. This is obviously not desirable.

How do you know if furniture complies with the regulations?

All furniture purchased in the UK since 1st March 1990 should comply and this is confirmed by the correct labeling.

Examples

These labels are typical of the type found on Sofas, Chairs and other lounge furniture.

Sofa fire label

Nice spelling mistake on the next one!

Chair label

Beds have a different type of label. Beds should comply with BS 7177.

Bed label

Retro furniture from the 1960's and 1970's

Whilst these items may be attractive as part of an interior design they will not comply and could put your guests at risk. You can of course have them re-upholstered using modern safe materials. It would be important to retain receipts for this work to prove the furniture is safe.

Warning

This area of the law is currently under review. We will update this page as soon as we know what changes are proposed.