A fire door is a complex structure that consists of various elements that must be designed, installed and maintained to ensure the fire resistance performance requirements are achieved when required to do so.
Apart from maintaining compartmentation, the other main function of fire doors is to allow access and pedestrian traffic flow.
The very use of a fire door on a regular basis can lead to damage and its safety features becoming less effective.
The humble door may seem unworthy of a lot of attention, but shut and in good condition, these can be the very difference between employees and others being able to exit a building in safety.
Smoke, heat and poisonous gases if they leak into the means of escape can prove.
So in this edition we are focusing on fire safety and the humble fire door.
Article 17 of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order requires the responsible person for fire safety to ensure that the premises and any facilities, equipment or devices are subject to a “suitable system of maintenance and are maintained in an efficient state, in efficient working order and in good repair”.
This is supported by BS8214 Timber based Fire Door Assemblies. Code of Practice for maintenance regimes should that include “inspection and testing by a competent person, as necessary, at suitable intervals”.
BS9999 Fire Safety in the Design, Management and Use of Buildings. Code of Practice recommends that automatic release devices are tested daily and monthly, while fire doors themselves are inspected every six-months.
However, BS8214 and guidance from the Architectural and Specialist Door Manufacturers Association (ASMA) suggest that the frequency of inspection can be determined according to the risk assessment and relative to the frequency of use of the doorway.
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