Until 2018, in particular, manufacturers of trains and their suppliers have to implement the provisions of the binding, European railway standard DIN EN 45545-2. Inter alia, the standards address the fire behaviour of the materials and components used.
As the subdivision of the safety classes into their range of application multiplicates the amount of plastic needed, with the thermosets BMC 0204 and SMC 0208 the Lorenz Kunststofftechnik GmbH developed material that comply with the new provisions.
Common causes of fire in trains are intentional or negligent arson as well as malfunctions of the electric system. Fire risks and their consequences are of highest importance in public transportation. The possibility to exit railway vehicles in the case of fire as safely as possible is a decisive factor of safety. “Other requirements apply in railway vehicles than in buildings, other plastics have to be used”, explains Thomas Lorenz, managing director of the Lorenz Kunststofftechnik GmbH. “These fire protection standards pose difficulties for manufacturers of material and components.” Yet, national fire protection regulations apply as for example the NF F 16-101 in France or the German DIN 5510. The new DIN EN 45545-2 shall now regulate and standardise the fire protection requirements on an European level so that the interoperability in the trans-European high-speed traffic as well as the safety of rail passengers is being guaranteed. The existing fire protection standards for railway vehicles of the international railway traffic and various European states are the basis for this, whereby the requirements depending on the country will be tightened in comparison to the previous regulations.