New regulations for the CE marking of construction products in accordance with Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council (EU) no. 305/2011 of 9 March 2011, introduced a number of changes both in terms of the rules and procedures of the CE marking of construction products and the obligations of economic operators. TELE-FONIKA Kable S.A., as a producer of cables and conduits used, for example, in the construction industry, focuses its activities in the field of cable and conduit fire safety in accordance with CPR Directive.
Regulation (EC) no. 305/2011 (CPR) covers all construction products designed for permanent installation, including cables and conduits, in construction buildings, such as civil buildings, public buildings, and engineering buildings. The Directive classifies the basic requirements such as:
• Carrying capacity and stability
• Fire safety
• Occupational health and safety and the environment safety
• Operational safety,
• Protection against noise
• Energy saving and thermal insulation
The general requirements in terms of the declaration of performance and methods of verification of the fire resistance of cables and conduits are included in EN 50575:2014. The detailed requirements can be found in the related standards, i.e.:
1. EN 13501-6: Classification of cables and conduits in reaction to fire. The standard specifies the scope and methodology of tests necessary for the evaluation of usable properties of cables allowing to classify cables to the appropriate class
2.CLC/TS 50576: It contains the methodology for determining the group of cables of a similar design for the selection of representatives (EXAP) to carry out tests, and to designate the classes of reaction-to-fire for this group.
The European Commission decided to postpone the date of implementation of standard EN 50575 from 1 December 2015 to 10 June 2016. The transitional period lasted for one year, beginning on 1 July 2016 and completing on 1 July 2017.
A consequence of the implementation of this directive is the obligation of cable manufacturers to issue the Declaration of Performance and marking of the products intended for construction with the CE mark in accordance with the requirements of the aforementioned regulation (305/2011).
In practice, TF Kable, prior to issuing the DoP, is required to test and classify the produced cables in accordance with EN 13501-6.
Depending on the classes of reaction-to-fire, different procedures will be applied:
System 4 - classification to Fca class carried out by the producer to find that cables do not meet any other classes of reaction-to-fire
System 3 - classification to Eca and Dca class carried out by the producer based on the tests carried out by the notified laboratory.
System 1 + - classification to B1, B2 and Cca class carried out by the notified certifying unit by testing cables and auditing the production process and the plant production control.
The procedure for the issuance of the DoP for the upper classes will be available subject to the following conditions:
- Notification about standard EN 50575 in the official journal, which was on 10 June 2016.
- Notification about the standards will allow the certifying units to strive for notification for this standard.
- After receiving the notification, the certifying units will be able to join the process of issuing certificates, involving:
- carrying out tests in the field of cables reaction-to-fire,
- carrying out audits of the production processes and the plant production control
- issuing the certificate.
The DoPs may be issued after satisfying the formal conditions by the certifying units and after testing cables, i.e. in the first place, they will be available for Fca Dca, Eca classes, i.e. for which the laboratory notification is required. Subsequently, the DoP will be issued for Cca, B2 and B1 classes, for which a notification of the certifying unit and the producer's audit are required
TF Kable engaged deeply in the process of adaptation to the European Union Regulation 305/2011 by:
1.providing the plant in Kraków, the Fire Test Laboratory, with a unique control and measuring device
2.carrying out a series of internal and external tests to completely draw up TF Kable’s portfolio based on the new requirements
3.close cooperation with the leading certifying units in Europe
Directive 305/2011 (Construction Products Regulation, or CPR) is a regulation of the European Union regarding construction products. It classifies construction products, and also specifies methodology of tests. Officially, it entered into force on 1 July 2013, yet as far as the cables and wires fire safety is concerned, the directive shall be based on the harmonised European EN 50575:2014 standard, which deadline of implementation was 1 July 2016.
According to the regulation of the EC, a product covered by the CPR is “any product or kit which is produced and placed on the market for incorporation in a permanent manner in construction works or parts thereof and the performance of which has an effect on the performance of the construction works with respect to the basic requirements for construction works”. Therefore, according to the definition, any cables or wires that has been designed for permanent fitment in buildings shall be classified as construction products, contrary to installations, which purposely has been fitted temporally.
The most important date for the cable manufacturers, as well as for their clients, is the implementation date of the EN 50575:2014 standard, which entered into force on 10 June 2016. On that day a transitional period starts, and it ends on 1 July 2017. During that period manufacturers must adjust their products to the new requirements, prepare and make available the Declaration of Performance, as well as CE marking.
After 1 July 2017, both the DoP and the CE marking will be obligatory. For Users, Distributors, Designers and Engineers, the transitional period is a chance to get familiar with the regulation and to adjust to it their choice of cables.
Declaration of Performance is a document issued for products covered by the harmonised European standard or for which a European Technical Assessment has been issued. A copy of such declaration must be transferred along with the product in an electronic or paper form (on request). Therefore, for products covered by the Directive 305/2011, Declaration of Performance (DoP) replaces Declaration of Conformity (DoC).
From 1 July 2016 certification units may strive for notification. Once the notification is granted, the units may issue certificates to manufacturers, who conducted tests in the field of cables reaction-to-fire, audits of the manufacturing processes, and plant manufacture control. DoP shall be issued to the Customers only after receiving certificates.
Declaration of Performance, as well as technical documentation, must be kept by the Manufacturer for 10 years.
CE marking shall be placed on labels of the products for which Manufacturer has compiled the Declaration of Performance. The product may be marked with CE after receiving a positive result from conformity procedure. CE marking is a confirmation of assigning the product to the proper euroclass. Therefore, a user can be sure that the highest criteria regarding fire protection has been met and documented, as the euroclasses may be easily recognised.
Basing on their combustion properties, cables are tested in accordance with standards of test, and then they are assigned to proper euroclasses. Current CPR directive defines seven classes: Aca, B1ca, B2ca, Cca, Dca, Eca, Fca, where Aca class includes “non-combustible cables”, and F class is described as “do not satisfy requirements of E class”. Regarding fire retardant properties and limiting gases exhausted during combustion, halogen cables with limited emission of gases and not emitting corrosive combustion products are especially useful. Such cables, according to their properties, allow quick evacuation in case of fire and do not destroy electronic equipment installed in the building. In lower classes, traditional cable materials, such as PVC, are allowed.
Classifications applied so far covered only tests for fire spread. CPR introduces duty of testing cables regarding 5 parameters: fire spread, heat production, smoke emission (smoke density), emission of corrosive gases and flaming droplets.
CPR states that for products covered by the regulations, Manufacturer is a direct Producer or Importer, if the production is carried out outside the EU. Manufacturer is obliged to issue DoP, CE marking and any required documentation regarding concluded tests. Producer defines which additional information should be included, e.g. information about hazardous substances subject to the REACH registration, manuals, etc. Designers, architects, contractors and local authorities are responsible for providing that properties of a given product are applicable in a particular situation.
Although methodology of tests and classification in the EU is unified, type of application is left to national regulations and standards. Each EU state may define its own methods of classification according to national regulation, or other classifications, yet it is not obligatory. From the entry into force of the CPR, classification of cables regarding their application has not been published yet in Poland. Any information in that field will be published on our website.
Yes, but only for products that are not covered by the CPR.