MSHA - Code of Federal Regulations - 30 CFR 7.407
Skip to content
MSHA - Title 30 CFR
30 CFR § 7.407
Test for flame resistance of electric cables and cable splices.


(a) Test procedure. (1) For electric cables, prepare 3 specimens of cable, each 3 feet in length, by removing 5 inches of jacket material and 2 inches of conductor insulation from both ends of each test specimen. For splices, prepare a splice specimen in each of 3 sections of MSHA-approved flame-resistant cable. The cable shall be of the type that the splice kit is designed to repair. The finished splice shall not exceed 18 inches or be less than 6 inches in length for test purposes. The spliced cables shall be 3 feet in length with the midpoint of the splice located 14 inches from one end. Both ends of each of the spliced cables shall be prepared by removing 5 inches of jacket material and 2 inches of conductor insulation. The type, amperage, voltage rating, and construction of the cable shall be compatible with the splice kit design. Each splice shall be made in accordance with the instructions provided with the splice kit.

(2) Prior to testing, condition each test specimen for a minimum of 24 hours at a temperature of 70 ±10°F (21.1 ±5.5°C) and a relative humidity of 55 ±10 percent. These environmental conditions shall be maintained during testing.

(3) For electric cables, locate the sensing element of the temperature measuring device 26 inches from one end of each test specimen. For splices, locate the sensing element 12 inches from the midpoint of the splice and 10 inches from the end of the cable. The sensing element must be secured so that it remains in direct contact with the metallic portion of the power conductor for the duration of the flame-resistant test. If a thermocouple-type temperature measuring instrument is used, connect the sensing element through the cable jacket and power conductor insulation. Other means for monitoring conductor temperature may be used, provided the temperature measurement is made at the same location. If the jacket and conductor insulation must be disturbed to insert the temperature measuring device, each must be restored as closely as possible to its original location and maintained there for the duration of the testing.

(4) Center the test specimen horizontally in the test chamber on the three rods. The three rods shall be positioned perpendicular to the longitudinal axis of the test specimen and at the same height, which permits the tip of the inner cone from the flame of the gas burner, when adjusted in accordance with the test procedure, to touch the jacket of the test specimen. The specimen shall be maintained at this level for the duration of the flame test. The two outermost rods shall be placed so that 1 inch of cable jacket extends beyond each rod. For electric cables, the third rod shall be placed 14 inches from the end of the test specimen nearer the temperature monitoring location on the specimen. For splices, the third rod shall be placed between the splice and the temperature monitoring location at a distance 8 inches from the midpoint of the splice. The specimen shall be free from external air currents during testing.

(5) Adjust the gas burner to give an overall blue flame 5 inches high with a 3-inch inner cone. There shall be no persistence of yellow coloration.

(6) Connect all power conductors of the test specimen to the current source. The connections shall be secure and compatible with the size of the cable's power conductors in order to reduce contact resistance.

(7) Energize all power conductors of the test specimen with an effective heating current value of 5 times the power conductor ampacity rating (to the nearest whole ampere) at an ambient temperature of 104 °F (40 °C).

(8) Monitor the electric current through the power conductors of the test specimen with the current measuring device. Adjust the amount of heating current, as required, to maintain the proper effective heating current value within ±5 percent until the power conductors reach a temperature of 400 °F (204.4 °C).

(9) For electric cables, apply the tip of the inner cone from the flame of the gas burner directly beneath the test specimen for 60 seconds at a location 14 inches from one end of the cable and between the supports separated by a 16 inch distance. For splices, apply the tip of the inner cone from the flame of a gas burner for 60 seconds beneath the midpoint of the splice jacket.

(10) After subjecting the test specimen to external flame for the specified time, fully remove the flame of the gas from beneath the specimen without disturbing air currents within the test chamber. Simultaneously turn off the heating current.

(11) Record the amount of time the test specimen continues to burn after the flame from the gas burner has been removed. The duration of burning includes the burn time of any material that falls from the test specimen after the flame from the gas has been removed.

(12) Record the length of burned (charred) area of each test specimen measured longitudinally along the cable axis.

(13) Repeat the procedure for the remaining two specimens.

(b) Acceptable performance. Each of the three test specimens shall meet the following criteria:

(1) The duration of burning shall not exceed 240 seconds.

(2) The length of the burned (charred) area shall not exceed 6 inches.


[57 FR 61221, Dec. 23, 1992]