New Standards for self-extinguishing cigarettes


Brussels (18 November 2010) – Fire-safety requirements for Reduced Ignition Propensity (RIP) cigarettes, i.e. cigarettes that self-extinguish when not actively smoked, are now covered by a new European Standard, EN 16516 ‘Cigarettes – Assessment of the ignition propensity’. This European Standard complements a first standard published by CEN and ISO in September this year, ISO 12863 ‘Standard test method for assessing the ignition propensity for cigarettes’. Both standards were developed to respond to the European Commission standardization mandate, M/425, relative to the fire-safety requirements for cigarettes.

The aim of developing standards for self-extinguished cigarettes was to find a technical solution to prevent cigarettes from burning through their whole length when not actively smoked as they remain a source of heat and therefore still represent a fire hazard. Indeed, cigarettes could ignite materials such as furniture or textiles.

M/425 provided the mandate to develop standards that take into consideration two different aspects: the fire safety requirement (dealt by EN 16156), and to define a suitable test method to determine whether the requirement is fulfilled by the specimens tested (handled by ISO 12863).

These two new standards will considerably improve the success in reducing fire hazards and contribute once again to a safer world.


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Celine Oeyen

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