A quick note about cable flame test requirements

Here’s one that can trip you up if you aren’t aware of an NRC-published update. It’s about testing cables to the correct flame-spread standard. But the correct standard has become obsolete . . . .

One critical aspect of cable qualification worth mentioning is the IEEE 383 flame test. It demonstrates that cables, when exposed to fire, are resistant to propagating it. This is important for fire protection. New cables, especially Class 1E cables, should conform to the IEEE 383 standard.

But the IEEE-383 flame test is an older standard, first appearing in 1971. In recent years it has been moved to IEEE 1202. In Regulatory Guide 1.189 (Section, the NRC allows the new IEEE-1202 standard as an alternative to the flame test described in IEEE 383.