13 Investigates


DEADLY DANGER: Fire test shows how fast home furniture can burn

Posted at 3:36 PM, Sep 13, 2018

A recent fire test shows how fast and hot newer furniture can burn leaving people mere seconds to escape.

13 Action News sister station, ABC Action News in Tampa Bay, Florida, conducted a fire test that included setting older, thrift store furniture on fire.

The fire test showed a solid wood entertainment center and couch that was built decades ago burned much slower than a second fire test which included more modern furniture.

The second test revealed a newer leather-bonded couch and coffee table burned much faster and produced a deadly cocktail of smoke and other toxins.

Tim Szymanski with Las Vegas Fire & Rescue says many materials in homes today are made from petroleum-based products.

"Back in the 70s, people could take about 15 to 17 minutes to evacuate your home," said Szymanski.

"Today, in about after three minutes, the temperature inside your home will be so hot but your shoes will actually melt to the floor," added Szymanski.

The Natural Resources Defense Council says there are specific labels to look for when purchasing furniture.

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