At the end of last year, Motorola issued an intent to cancel the FM (Factory Mutual) radio options and remove them from their portfolio because the FM standards are now being migrated to TIA/UL standards.
Note that this change is only for Motorola FM intrinsically safe radios which are often used in hazardous work environments such as Utility, Oil & Gas, Shipping, Nuclear Power, Refineries, Fuel Storage Facilities, Chemical Plants and Plastics Processing Plants.
Motorola Intrinsically Safe radios will now be accredited with the TIA-4950 standard for Two-Way Radio Hazardous Location* certification by Underwriters Laboratories (UL) as of 1st January 2016:
- 31 December 2015 – cease production of Intrinsically Safe two-way radios approved to the Factory Mutual (FM) standard FM3610_88 and the new LMR (Land Mobile Radio) radios manufactured before the 31st December 2015.
- Motorola is now transitioning to the TIA 4950 standard** for its new products and the existing Division 1, Class 1 portfolio.
- Radios already being used in the field, will still maintain their approved status, providing the radio repairs are completed by an FM audited site.
- So replacements for existing radios, FM Approved batteries and accessories will continue to be sold and also for those two-way radios manufactured to the 3610_88 standard before the end of December 2015.
- As of 1st January 2016, new radios will need to meet the TIA-4950 standards and all replacement batteries for these radios, will be using this standard.
To ensure a smooth transition to the new standard for you and your radio fleet, please note the following:
- All Motorola radios shipped after the 1st January 2016 will be UL certified (TIA-4950 standard).
- FM approved aftermarket batteries will continue to be available for two-way radio units already in the field.
- FM approved radios already deployed in the field will maintain their FM Intrinsically Safe approval status, provided that any service and repairs are done at an FM audited repair facility.
- This is important – FM approved batteries may only be used on an FM approved radios, and the UL approved batteries can only be used on UL approved radios, otherwise the certification is not valid. However, you can operate with both FM and UL approved radios in your fleet.
- All MOTOTRBO™ radios and batteries certified to TIA-4950 standard will be labeled clearly with the new UL markings: black label, white font, white dot.
Please note this change is purely relating to Motorola’s FM intrinsically safe radios and does not change or affect their ATEX portfolio. Please call Business Communications if you would like to discuss this change.
* The standard for hazardous locations is determined by the Jurisdictional authorities, fire marshals, insurance providers and facility safety experts and they set different ratings for different environments.
** The compliance testing for this will be done by the Underwriters Laboratories or National Recognized testing lab, NRTL.