When is a fire door not a fire door?

When is a fire door not a fire door?

Fire doors are probably one of the most boring subjects on earth – until you have a fire, then they suddenly become real heroes and save lives!  Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work out like that and fire doors don’t always do the job they’re supposed to do.

Let’s be brutally honest – a fire door is usually a box that needs ticking on your list of compliance requirements.  In their wisdom the ‘elf and safety brigade have said that you have to have them in certain situations – there’s no choice about it.

So you’ve done what the regulations say and installed a fire door (or maybe several), but how can you be sure that they will do the job they’re supposed to do?

Some people think that a fire door is there as an easy means of getting out of the building – confusing it with a fire exit.  In fact, the door is there to stop the fire making progress and keep it contained in an area for as long as possible. 

Your staff need to understand that a fire door is NOT a fire door if it’s propped open.  Knowing that a fire door should always be left closed and dealing with the inconvenience it can cause if you’re carrying a tray of coffee to the office can tempt people to apply a wedge to keep the door open.  It’s important that they are thoroughly educated that a fire door is only a fire door when it’s used properly.

If you want your staff to be more aware of fire door safety – get them involved in Fire Door Safety Week (15th-21st September) and help them to  ensure the fire doors in their workplace are doing the job they are supposed to do.

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