We have pledged our support for Fire Door Safety Week (23rd-29th Sept) and are delighted to bring our fire door blog.
A fire door is a vital safety device engineered to save lives and property. The correct specification, supply, fitting and maintenance are critical and the responsibility of each and every person in the process.
It’s only when a fire breaks out that the consequences of poorly manufactured or fitted fire doors are known.
What is a fire door?
A door must have fire test evidence to prove that it is a fire door. This evidence is usually in the form of a certificate of performance.
A fire door must be tested by an independent test organisation in accordance to British or European Standards. Installed and maintained correctly, it WILL perform in the event of a fire.
What do fire door’s actually do?
Buildings are compartmentalised to delay the spread of fire from one area to another. These compartments are usually linked by fire doors to allow the flow of traffic around the building. Fire doors have two important functions in a fire; when closed they form a barrier to stop the spread of fire and when opened they provide a means of escape.
A well-designed timber fire door will delay the spread of fire and smoke without causing too much hindrance to the movement of people and goods.
Every fire door is therefore required to act as a barrier to the passage of smoke and/or fire to varying degrees depending upon its location in a building and the fire hazards associated with that building.
The main categories of fire doors are FD30mm (44mm thick) and FD60 (54mm thick) which offer 30 and 60 minutes fire protection.
What makes a fire door work?
In the event of a fire the following elements are critical to making sure a fire door performs in a fire:
- Door leaf
- Frame / lining
- Intumescent seals
- Smoke seals
- Latch or lock
- Door closer
- Other ironmongery
- Fire door glazing
- Frame / wall sealing
- Threshold seals
- Air transfer grille
Get just one thing wrong = High chance of failure = Loss of life or property
What happens if it goes wrong?
Manufacturing, installing or maintaining fire doors incorrectly results in 5 main risks:
- Danger for users of the building and possible loss of life
- Danger for emergency services responding to a fire
- You could be prosecuted with a fine or imprisonment
- Property and possessions will not be protected
- Risk to reputation
Do fire doors need regular inspections?
Article 17 of the fire safety order makes it a legal requirement to ensure that fire resisting doors and escape doors are correctly installed and adequately maintained in order for them to be fit for purpose.
The authorities have the power to enforce the Fire Safety Order and do prosecute or even close buildings down where breaches are discovered.
Fire doors should be regularly inspected for damage that may prevent the door from performing in the event of a fire. This may form part of the risk assessment for the building. All parts of the door assembly or doorset should be inspected.
To pledge your support to Fire Door Safety Week visit: https://www.firedoorsafetyweek.co.uk/
For more information on fire door inspections or advice please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org or call on 0191 444 2000.