Mandatory NFPA 285 testing will make UAE buildings fireproof

Seminar on new UAE Fire and Safety codeSeminar on new UAE Fire and Safety code. (Image source: iris pr)Building contractors, developers, and consultants were given an in-depth analysis of the new test known as NFPA 285 made mandatory by the new fire code

Over 200 industry players attended a joint seminar by Alupex, Knauf Insulation and Siderise to discuss the implications of UAE’s new Fire and Life Safety code, NFPA 285. It is a standardised fire test procedure for evaluating the suitability of exterior, non-load bearing wall assemblies and panels used as components of curtain wall assemblies on buildings where the exterior walls are required to be non-combustible.

 According to David Adams, Managing Director of Knauf Exeed Insulation in the Middle East and South Asia; “It is important to note that NFPA 285 is an assembly test, all of the components of the façade need to be tested together in a full-scale system. Cladding system contributes to flame spread resulting in risk of multiple simultaneous secondary fires. If the external cladding or insulation contributes to the flame spread, then there is a risk of secondary fire spread to all levels of a building. The NFPA 285 test will ensure that every material that goes into a system meets the fire safety norms. Only approved non-combustible thermal insulation should be used. Glass mineral wool insulation, which has better thermal insulation and is non-combustible, is what we recommend for better fire safety.”

Chris Hall, Commercial Development Officer at Siderise, manufacturer of Lamatherm perimeter firestop and cavity barrier, said: “The primary criteria when choosing insulation and materials should be their fire resistance capacity. The new code ensures that tests shall be conducted for the entire assembly that is intended for use on the building façade, including wall panels, cavities, insulation, panel rails, joint sealants, seams, fasteners, barriers and other construction details.”

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