Since ASTM adopted its guide to the writing of fire hazard assessment standards, there have been several initiatives aimed at producing an actual standard for a specific product class and occupancy. I have been the leader in several of them, from a draft for fire safety in rail cars to a draft on upholstered furniture in health care facilities. So far, none of them has become an ASTM standard. Part of the reason is that this is an entirely new type of document that is technically very challenging. But there are also other reasons that go to fundamental questions about what types of standards and guides people want to use in the built environment. This paper will be an overview of what I have seen and heard while pursuing draft fire hazard assessment standards and guides, and my own opinions and sense of what it all means for the direction of performance-based fire safety documents at ASTM.
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