Fire doors are an important yet often overlook asset to any business. From prevent thousands of pounds worth of damage to saving the lives of tens or even hundreds of people, fire doors can make a tremendous difference during a fire.
Here are just a few things to think about when it comes to using fire doors effectively.
What do fire doors do?
A fire door is more than just a barrier between two rooms, it’s a specially engineered piece of equipment designed to meet a tough set of fire safety criteria.
Fire doors help to break a building into different compartments. This can slow down the speed of a fire and prevent it from spreading through a building as quickly as it would naturally. If a fire door stands between a person and a fire, their chance of survival increases dramatically.
Fire doors also help fire crews determine a plan of action when it comes to rescuing people within the building.
Whose responsibility is it to install and maintain fire doors?
In England and Wales, the law states that if you are an employer, landlord, owner or occupier of business or non-domestic premises, you are responsible for fire safety within that building and you’re considered the ‘responsible person’.
Therefore, if you fall under one of the above categories, it’s your job to ensure fire doors are installed where required and regularly maintained so that they can work effectively.
Is there a correct way to install fire doors?
Yes. Introducing fire doors to your premises isn’t automatically enough to ensure you’re abiding by government legislation. When fire doors are installed, the frame, locks, and latches must be installed correctly and in line with regulations. Failure to follow the necessary guidelines could put lives at risk.
The doors must also have been tested by an independent organisation to ensure they abide by British or European Standards. Fire doors that haven’t been tested in this way might fail to protect people in the event of a fire.
By hiring a specialist fire safety company to install the fire doors for you, you can make sure your money is being put to good use and the fire doors will do exactly what they’re supposed to. In the event of a fire, fire doors could also help to protect the property itself along with any valuables within it.
How can I effectively maintain the fire doors within my business?
The slightest changes to your fire doors could significantly impact its performance. For example, if a hinge has become loose, there is a hole in the door, or extremely flammable materials have been placed either side of it, it may fail to work as well as it should.
Once installed, fire doors should be inspected regularly to make sure they’re still functioning effectively. It may be wise to introduce a fire safety door inspection into your existing fire risk assessments. By checking the fire doors at the same time as your asses fire alarms and extinguishers you can keep your premises safe while saving time and money in the process.
If you don’t already have a fire risk assessment in place, it’s crucial that you implement one immediately.
To learn more about fire doors and risk assessments, please get in touch with the team at Total Fire Services.