WASHINGTON—The Underwriters Laboratories (UL) has publicly identified manufacturers and their distributors that are supplying substandard and unsafe cable products into the North American market.
Additionally, the testing/certification agency has established further initiatives to verify the integrity of UL-Listed cables through detailed analytical testing of cable component materials and new marketplace surveillance. UL was able to do this with the assistance of the Communications Cable and Connectivity Association (CCCA), which has been urging the organization to develop stronger measures to assure compliance to national fire safety codes and telecommunications industry standards for transmission performance.
To view UL’s recent announcement warning that cabling providers used unauthorized reference to its mark, click here.
“CCCA is pleased to have been an important contributor to UL’s development of improved, tougher quality assurance procedures which led to this significant and decisive action,” says CCCA Executive Director Frank Peri. “UL is to be commended for its industry leadership and for being the first testing agency to take additional steps to protect users from poor quality as well as the serious fire safety hazards from non-compliant cable being imported into North America.”
Some cable brands entering the North American market from offshore manufacturers seriously failed flame and smoke tests required by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), according to a CCCA independent research program. Furthermore, those brands appeared to be manufactured using inferior materials.
The hidden placement of the cables within building infrastructure is problematic because of the possibility of combustion. If combustion were to occur, inhabitants would likely be unaware of the problem until the fire had significantly progressed, according to the research. Also, communications cables that fail to meet minimum standards for physical and transmission performance can potentially result in network failures and lost productivity.