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Morris, W.A., Hopkinson, J.S. and Malhotra, H.L., 1970. FIRE HAZARD OF EXPANDED POLYSTYRENE LININGS. Fire Research Notes 827


The use of expanded polystyrene wall linings and ceiling tiles has increased in recent years and reports have been made on fires in domestic buildings where the material had been used. The present investigation was undertaken to determine the fire behaviour of linings of expanded polystyrene in the thicknesses used in domestic buildings. The experimental work utilized ad hoc test procedures ranging in scale from 900 mm^3 boxes to full size rooms and covered such factors as the method of fixing, type of material and decorative finishes. For the range of situations covered by this investigation the tests have established that the behaviour of the material fixed in place by an adhesive is different from that shown by an examination of small samples. It has been concluded that when applied to a suitable substrate with an overall application of adhesive and left undecorated the linings do not present a fire hazard. The use of flame retardant paints is to be recommended for safety but with a matt finish emulsion paint the finished linings provide an acceptable level of safety for domestic buildings. The use of gloss finishes on this material represents a serious fire hazard and should be avoided.

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