This week is National Fire Door Safety Week.
Most properties have them, they are a requirement in most offices and businesses. Fire doors confine the smoke and prevents the fire from spreading further. Protecting the rest of the building. Therefore, it is essential that access to the fire doors is kept clear. Fire doors are used to keep clear routes that lead out of the building- such as hallways, and those extra few minutes could save your life.
Fire Doors, how do they work?
A closed fire door should automatically close. If yours does not, you might want to see that your fire door is fitted with a self-closing device. Fire doors are thicker than normal doors and tested during production. They are constructed with intumescent strips which expand when heated, creating a barrier. It should be able to hold off the fire for approximately 30 minutes. Giving people time to exit from the building.
The Impact of Grenfell:
Since the fire of Grenfell Tower, there has been a mass reform in safety awareness and measures put in place to protect and improve safety measures. The Scottish Government independently reviewed building standards in 2017. Scotland’s fire safety requirements come from the Building (Scotland) Act 2003 and the Fire Safety (Scotland) Regulations 2006. Smoke alarms must be fitted in all homes (2021). Safety checks must be regularly done to ensure the building is safe to live in. Later next year (2022) further requirements for escape provisions and sprinklers in high-rise buildings.
Between 2020 and 2021, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service installed 12,574 smoke alarms and despite the 53,122 false alarms attended, fire services attended almost 25,000 fires: both primary and secondary.
Legal Requirements for Fire Doors
Legally, any non-domestic properties, properties with three or more floors, and flats must have at least one fire door. Fire risk assessments should also be regularly updated. Doors that are worn, ill-fitted, or damage must be replaced.