Fire_SafetyWhile communications cables are a critical utility for modern buildings, they also become a fuel source in a fire and even a few seconds of margin built into cable fire safety can save lives.  Health and safety are paramount, and should remain high on the agenda of anyone involved in the provision and installation of power and communication cables.  Check out this paper by Dr. TC Tan.  

Safety is a Priority at CommScope

CommScope invests an average of $200 million in Research & Development each year, adhering to industry standards and stringent testing to ensure products meet safety requirements while protecting customers from counterfeit. This video shows an example of counterfeit cable compared to fire safety compliant cable testing.

CLICK TO TWEET: Learn how CommScope addresses CPR because safety is a priority.

As mentioned in a previous blog, “The Cabling Industry Invests in People’s Safety,” CommScope’s manufacturing facilities serving the European market have been audited and approved by Notified Bodies.  CommScope has carried out extensive testing with multiple Notified Bodies.  In turn, CommScope’s cable design engineering teams are extremely focused on ensuring construction materials are designed and refined to meet national and international standards for both permanent and temporary construction. 

Given CommScope’s focus on safety, flammability testing is an integral part of communications cable development. The engineering team conducts follow-up random sample testing to provide the highest level of safety assurance, ensuring each cable complies to all standards listed below with one design.

  • ANSI/UL 444 Communications cables
  • ANSI/UL 1651 Optical fiber cables
  • IEC 60332-3 for horizontal cables
  • IEC 60332-1 for patch cords

How CommScope Addresses (CPR) Construction Product Regulation

As of 1 July 2017, CPR specifications became mandatory in countries across Europe, albeit each member country can adopt the Euroclass they deem suitable.  This variation in requirements adds to the complexity of building and testing products for individual specifications.  To address this challenge, CommScope designs, builds, tests and installs using the most stringent requirements.  This means a single set of products can comply with a broad set of European CPR mandates which include:

  • EN 50399: Common test methods for cables under fire conditions – Heat release and smoke, production measurement on cables during flame spread test – Test apparatus, procedures, results
  • EN 13501-6: Fire classification of construction products and building elements – Part 6: Classification using test data from reaction to fire tests
  • EN 50576: Electric cables - Extended application of test results  

Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTL such as UL and Intertek)

CommScope recognizes NRTLs are critical in testing compliance to fire safety standards. CommScope has established partnerships with UL and ETL in safety standards and codes development. This knowledge is valuable as it improves safety compliance. 

Certified Installation

CommScope uses trained contractors to install cabling which is then inspected and certified to comply with CommScope standards. This provides an additional degree of assurance for safe installation.  

Operational Safety

CommScope’s automated infrastructure management (AIM) software monitors the cable plant. This technology enables rapid response to emergencies. 

About the Author

Masood Shariff

Masood is an Engineer Senior Principal in the systems engineering group of CommScope. Masood represents CommScope in the ISO WG3 committee, TIA TR42 Premises Cabling Standards, including the TIA-568 series, TIA-569-C, TIA-570-B, TIA-606-B, TIA-758, TIA-862, TIA-942-A and related standards working groups. Masood served as chair of TIA TR42.7 for many years and was responsible for copper cabling systems specifications including category 5e, category 6, category 6A, and TSB-162 on WLAN cabling. Masood is currently the chair of the committee for the TIA network security project and the TIA-162 revision project. Masood has a Bachelor of Technology degree from IIT India and a Master of Science degree in Computer Science from the University of Delaware.

See all posts by this author

Add Your Comment

Please submit your comment using the form below

 
(required)