The Urethane Blog

New Hampshire FR Regulation

New Hampshire to restrict chemicals in furniture, firefighting foams

Products - Firefighting517©Mario Hoesel www.stockadobe.comNew Hampshire’s governor Chris Sununu has signed into law legislation prohibiting the sale of upholstered furniture containing flame retardant (FR) chemicals and limiting the use of firefighting foams containing per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs).

The first, SB 193, will ban the sale, manufacture and distribution of upholstered furniture containing in its covering or cushioning material an FR or FR mixture of over 1%. The legislation defines FR as any chemical with a functional use to resist or inhibit the spread of fire, including halogenated, phosphorus-based, nitrogen-based and nanoscale substances.

Exceptions to the ban include for used furniture, furniture purchased for public use, and mattresses. New furniture manufactured before 2020, as well as products imported or purchased by a retailer or wholesaler before 2021, are also exempted.

The law will also authorise the state’s attorney general to require furniture manufacturers to provide a certificate of compliance, and includes a provision indemnifying retailers. It took effect on 3 September.

New Hampshire follows both Maine and California in taking action to ban FRs in upholstered furniture in recent years. The class of substances has remained in the spotlight in both Europe and the US due to concerns about their environmental and health effects.