When we're asleep, we're most vulnerable, which is why fire doors are crucial for our safety. The correct specification, installation, maintenance, and management of fire doors can be a matter of life and death.
Sadly, fire door breaches are still common, resulting in fines under the Fire Safety Order. These breaches include doors being wedged open, missing or damaged doors, and even non-fire doors being wrongly installed.
As part of Fire Door Safety Week 2023, we are urging building managers, landlords, tenants, and all building users to check their fire doors' operation and condition. If you have any concerns about the fire doors or come ones that are damaged, then report it to your landlord or building manager without delay. Remember, fire doors must remain shut to be effective and save lives.
Dom Purchon, HFRS Head of Protection, emphasises the importance of effective fire doors: "A fire door is not always a fire exit door and is typically identified by a blue 'FIRE DOOR KEEP SHUT' sign often at eye level.
Fire doors help compartmentalise a building, such as a block of flats, containing fire and smoke in one area, giving time for residents to safely get out and for our crews to tackle the fire."
Fire Door Safety Week provides a 5 Step Fire Door Check that anyone can do:
- Check for certification: Look for a label or plug indicating it's a certified fire door.
- Check the gaps: Make sure the gaps around the top and sides of the door are consistently less than 4mm when closed.
- Check the seals: Examine the intumescent seals around the door or frame for any damage or signs of wear.
- Check the hinges: Verify that the hinges are firmly fixed, with no missing or broken screws (ideally three or more hinges).
- Check the door closes properly: Open the door halfway and let it close by itself. It should firmly latch without sticking on the floor or frame.
For more information, visit www.firedoorsafetyweek.co.uk and prioritise your fire door safety.