Urban Storm launches economic fire retardant media

Barney Cox
Monday, October 4, 2010

Poster specialist Urban Storm has launched a substrate that it claims offers the highest fire safety rating possible at an economic price.

"It’s a potentially huge market that has been overlooked," said Urban Storm managing director Sam Cook. "Everyone’s perception of class zero rated substrates is that they are too expensive but I think that we will need substrates that meet the highest UK fire certifications to satisfy fire safety officers. Regulations aren’t going to get more lax."

The Ecoflex class zero printing substrate is a woven glass fibre with a non-toxic polymer coating.

"It’s passed all the tests for toxicity and smoke for the most demanding underground use; it’s about as high quality as you can get," said Cook.

Applications for the material include pretty much any internal graphics application including hotels, transport interchanges, conferences and exhibitions, retail, hospitals and other public spaces.

"It’s particularly relevant when graphics are above head height, you don’t want a burning poster effectively dripping napalm on people in the event of a fire," he said.

Cook is offering to sell the material to other printers to ensure that it is an economic choice, and believes that at £4 per m2 it is comparable with standard materials and a third the price of those with an equivalent fire rating.

"I think we can get the cost down by offering it to everyone, that way everyone can comply with fire regulations," he said. "As it surpasses health & safety requirements this really is a substrate for the future."

Urban Storm has produced its first posters using the material for CBS at Network Rail’s Bristol Temple Meads station.

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