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The phenolic products from the thermal decomposition of phenolformaldehyde laminates have been studied by gas chromatography and mass spectrometry at temperatures between 300 and 550C in nitrogen and air. The main phenolic components have been identified as phenol, o- and p-cresols, 2:4- and 2:6-xylenols and 2:4:6-trimethyl phenol. The maximum yields of the phenols are obtained at 460C in nitrogen. The presence of air greatly reduces the quantities of the phenolic products. It is shown that in fires the phenolic laminates could, under certain conditions, generate hazardous amounts of phenolic products. The results of three experimental fire tests are recorded to show that the concentrations of phenol and cresols appear to be lower than expected and, in these tests, not hazardous in comparison with the carbon monoxide.