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Every 80 seconds in the United States, a home catches fire. When a home fire starts, every second count. Fires can spread quickly and rapidly, leaving you less than six minutes to bring your family to safety. And, by the time your smoke detector sounds, your family may have as little as two minutes to escape to safety. That’s why there is a federal flammability standard for mattresses.
Bedrooms are the second most common location of home fire after the kitchen. Each year 20,800 fires are attributed to mattresses and bedding, causing 380 deaths and 2,220 injuries. Most mattress fires are started by children under five-years-old playing with matches and lighters. In fact, mattress fires are the leading cause of fire death among preschoolers.
A new Federal standard effective July 1st, 2007 requires all mattress sets manufactured and imported in the U.S. to meet a strict performance standard design to reduce the severity of mattress fires. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) estimates the new standard will save as many as 270 lives, reducing mattress-related fire deaths by 78 percent and injuries by 84 percent, or 1,330 persons per year.
For more information, read this information from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Below is a video that shows the difference between a non-compliant mattress and a new flammability standard-compliant mattress.