The Power of Standards
The world thrives on innovation, but with every new product or service come new dangers or risks associated with the technology. In order to ensure that new products, systems and services operate safely and effectively, UL Standards & Engagement develops standards that address these risks while guiding the safety, performance and sustainability of new and evolving technologies.
Our safety standards outline the processes in which products are tested to help mitigate risk, injury or danger. In developing these standards, and in revising existing standards, we combine extensive safety research, stakeholder input and scientific expertise with an uncompromising focus on quality.
In addition to ensuring safety, standards can also measure and validate performance, environmental health and sustainability. They can help ensure a smartphone effectively communicates with a smart appliance, or that a life-saving device, such as an automated external defibrillator (AED), is intuitive enough for first-time users. When these procedures are built into the manufacturing process, they can provide consumers, manufacturers and retailers with confidence that their products will operate correctly and effectively.
With more than 125 years of experience and the development of more than 1,500 standards, UL Standards & Engagement continues to break new ground in its mission of working for a safer world. We partner and share information with international standards-setting bodies and work closely with other organizations and committees from around the world to advance safety across industries. If you are interested in partnering with UL Standards & Engagement and participating in standards development, learn more about how to get involved.
Our work in this area began in 1893, with the showcase of electric lights at the Chicago World’s Fair. With a single switch, President Grover Cleveland lit 100,000 incandescent lights at once, inaugurating the festival and illuminating the entire fairground. Behind the scenes, our founder, William Henry Merrill, Jr., worked to assess fire risks as an electrical inspector. Electricity posed a major fire and electrocution hazard, but through science-based research, Merrill and his team were able to help guide the technology and mitigate these risks. Read more about the history of our organization on our interactive timeline.
Safety standards are written documents that outline the process in which a product is tested to help mitigate risk, injury or danger.
UL Standards & Engagement is a standard-setting organization that combines extensive safety research and scientific expertise, and brings an uncompromising focus on quality to help create a safer world.
UL standards cover more than just products — they also include requirements for systems and services.
While we’re widely known for our work with safety standards, UL Standards & Engagement develops a wide variety of standards to measure and validate performance, environmental health and sustainability.
UL Standards & Engagement also collaborates with international standards-setting bodies. We are closely involved with other organizations and committees throughout North America and around the world to advance safety across industries.
Helping to Guide the Development of Safe and Effective Firefighting Foams
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently issued new health advisories concerning chemicals known as PFAS, which are present in firefighting foams. Read how we’re working with the fire industry to help guide the development of safe alternatives.