Guest Blogger: Michael Earnheart, Rhode Island Showroom Manager
A new study from the University of Central Lancashire in Great Britain has pointed to chemical flame-retardants are the number one cause of fire deaths.
However, not due to reasons you may think.
Dr. Anna Stec, a Lecturer in Chemistry and Fire Science at the department of Forensic & Investigative Sciences at UCLAN has determined that while flame-retardants such as the widely-used PDBE are indeed flame inhibitive, they increase the release of volatile, toxic gasses.
Stec’s research has proven that when a fire interacts with materials treated with the PDBE or any “halogen-based“ flame retardant, the detrimental effects of increased carbon monoxide and hydrogen cyanide. The term “halogen-based” is used because bromine, a chemical-element used in the most common flame retardant is a member in a group of elements called halogens.
Many common household items contain PDBE or other halogen-based flame retardants, including: mattresses, box springs, bedding, furniture, and upholstery.
Nearly 3,500 deaths occur each year in the United States as a result of fires, but the majority of the deaths are not due to the conventionally assumed triage burns, but the inhalation of toxic gasses released by the ignited materials.
Aside from being aware of fire safety, purging your home of items covered in chemical flame barriers is a smart step for a safer and healthier life. Take your mattress and foundation for example: Does your mattress use PDBEs? If so, it is time to consider a safer and superior, organic and natural system such as organic wool or something innovative like baking soda and eucalyptus-derived silica.
Ridding your lives of these common and needlessly unsafe chemicals is a way to guarantee you and your loved ones rest easier.
The Clean Bedroom is committed to helping you lead a chemical-free life, starting in your sanctuary – the bedroom.
Until next time, sleep healthy.