WPA publishes new guidance for specification of flame retardant treated wood

10 October 2016

The Wood Protection Association (WPA) has released a new edition of its manual for dealing with the fire protection of wood and wood-based panel products.

“Verification of quality, fitness for purpose and declarations of performance are vital when specifying flame retardant protection for wood. This new WPA manual helps designers get to grips with the big specification issues and avoid the consequences of getting it wrong,” the organisation said.

Fire safety is a critical factor in building design and where wood is the material of choice this manual is designed to provide clear guidance about how to ensure the right flame retardant (FR) treatment or FR treated panel is specified for the project.

According to Steve Young, director of the WPA, the manual as setting a new generic guidance benchmark for those involved in building design or building control by placing emphasis on procedures that verify quality, fitness for purpose and the performance claims made by a supplier.

“This new manual deals exclusively with quality assured products applied by a controlled industrial process,” he added. “All of the processes and wood species described are commercially available, tried and tested and capable of meeting the reaction to fire performance required in the Euroclass standards that now apply in the UK.”

The scope of this new WPA manual includes generic guidance about choosing the right FR product for use in three distinct application categories or FR types: dry interiors (INT1), humid environments (INT2) and externally exposed timber (EXT) where leach resistance is a key requirement.

Model specification clauses for European standards of fire performance (Euro classes) are provided for a designer to cut and paste into project specifications or BIM systems but extended guidance about a specific timber component is given in the section featuring the long established WPA Commodity Code System of specification.

This system enables a specifier to simply match the timber component requiring FR protection to one of five application groups and quote the WPA Commodity Code into the specification or BIM system, the organisation explained.

The WPA Flame Retardant Specification Manual costs £45 and is published in electronic format. The manual (Ref: FRSM/E3 October 2016 ) is published as an electronic pdf and is available now in the publications section of www.wood-protection.org