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Fire friendly plastic from Polysource Australia

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Some plastics are safer than others in fire situations. In any fire, the smoke that kills the most victims.  Once a fire is started, smoke has already taken its toll.  Smoke can be made more deadly by chemicals or fumes, and differing plastics vary widely in this regard:

  • Polyethylene- Polyethylene is a tough version of candle wax, and emits no additional fumes
  • Polyurethane is at the other end of the scale, needing careful monitoring with a fire retardant additive, in risky applications
  • PVC is a mid range plastic, and is naturally self-extinguishing, but emits irritating fumes.  There is also concern that some Chlorine compounds produced at extremely high temperatures may be carcinogenic, resulting in the fact that it is not a fire friendly plastic. Many plastic fabricators form, drill and weld PVC sheet for industrial appliances, marine boards and laboratory facilities
The ideal type of plastic in a situation where a fire erupted is a chlorine-free plastic, ABS. The benefits and features of ABS include:
  • ABS offers outstanding rigidity, toughness, impact resistance, surface finish and thermoforming qualities
  • ABS sheet an extremely versatile material inside and out
  • It's resistance to cracking and impact is higher than PVC, and its density is lower, making it lighter and a more energy efficient material
  • ABS is unaffected by constant immersion in water, acids and alkalis
  • This particular type of plastic can be machined using the same tools used for wood and metals
  • ABS can be easily glued, unlike some other plastics
ABS plastic is used in a variety of applications, such as panelling; appliance castings which need high impact strength; autobody shelving and toys. The fact that it contains no chlorine results in a safer material in the event of a fire breaking out.

For more information on ABS, visit Polysource Australia .

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