September has been a busy month for promoters of fire safety. Hot on the heels of the CFOA UK Business Safety Week, which took place at the start of the month, Fire Door Safety Week 2015 commenced on 14 September.
Unlike many other similar awareness campaigns, Fire Door Safety Week is not run by a fire-related organisation such as the CFOA. Instead, it is organised by the British Woodworking Federation, working in conjunction with the Fire Door Inspection Scheme (FDIS).
The Five-Step Fire Door Check
As with fire curtains, fire doors are an integral part of a building’s passive and structural fire protection. Unlike fire curtains however, which remain out of sight unless activated, fire doors are hard to miss. This makes it a simple task to complete a regular health check on the working condition of fire doors. The organisers of Fire Door Safety Week have compiled a five-point check-list.
All fire doors which have been officially certified should display evidence of this. Usually, this is in the form of a label situated on the top of the door itself. Occasionally, it may be located on the side.
Fire doors are in place to prevent both flames and smoke from spreading throughout a building. This is why it is vitally important that the gaps around the edges of the door are uniform and no wider than four millimetres when it is closed. Although the gap at the bottom of the door can be a littler wider, it should still not be possible to see light coming through.
The seals around a fire door are essential for maintaining performance under the intense heat of a fire. Expanding in heat, seals in good working order will help to prevent smoke spreading.
All door hinges should be firmly kept in place, with no missing or broken screws. Any irregularities should be fixed immediately.
Every fire door should close firmly without catching either on the floor or the frame itself. To test this, open the door about half way and then let it close of its own accord. If it fails to do so, the relevant authority should be informed, as a fire door will not work properly unless it is completely shut.
These checks are quick and easy to carry out and could help to save lives in the event of a fire. Download the PDF to print out at work!