Scarily, fire and rescue services attended 555,358 incidents in 2021, which was an increase of 5% from the previous year’s statistics. Of these, there were 280 fire-related fatalities. This was not limited solely to residential properties, however, as 22,000 workplace fires and 1300 school fires occur every year within the UK, equating to around 470 per week.
The fire epidemic throughout Great Britain continues to grow, as more things begin to incorporate electricity into their design, often being used incorrectly. Furthermore, with the introduction of heating caps, many people have begun to turn to traditional fire heating methods to warm their homes, increasing the potential risk of fires even further. In aid of this, the UK government has spent £3.13 billion on fire protection services within the last year, which is the highest figure in over a decade. Despite these efforts, many are choosing to prioritise their funding on other means than fire safety, which is now more important than ever.
In light of the above, and in the spirit of Fire Door Safety Week, we have created the following blog to explore one of the most important fire safety measures available, so that you may maximise your property’s resistance to fire and ability to protect those inside.
What is a fire door and why are they important?
Fire doors are an engineered component, which includes the frame, door leaf, as well as fixtures and fittings. They can be solid, made with flax board, or a wood composite material. Fire doors are fitted with intumescent seals, which are installed into the frame or the leaf, as a means of sealing the door as soon as they come into contact with heat – limiting the spread of the fire temporarily, and preventing smoke from escaping around the edges of the door.
Fire doors are integral for safety, as they are designed to withstand the spread of fire for a minimum of 30 minutes. This allows the people inside the building much-needed time to leave the building via an escape route if other exits are impacted by the fire.
What is Fire-Door Safety Week?
Safety doesn’t occur by accident. It is understood that security and safety are high priorities for homeowners and renters. However, safety is almost always lower on the agenda. People are in fact six times more likely to report a heating system issue than they are to report a fire door complaint. Furthermore, people are twice as likely to report a toilet that doesn’t flush or a lack of hot water, than a fire door issue, despite to the fact that these essential features can literally save your life.
Fire-Door Safety Week occurs from the 31st of October – the 4th of November. The purpose of the week is to raise awareness of the crucial role that fire doors play in saving lives and protecting your property in the event of a fire. Make time to save a life.
How to check your fire doors effectively
Fire doors are now a legal requirement in every commercial, public, and multiple occupancy building. As the primary line of defense in the event of a fire, it is crucial to check the operative effectiveness and condition of your fire doors regularly. The following are your best options for ensuring your fire doors comply with regulations:
One of the most important ways to check whether your fire door is fit for purpose is to check whether it has been certified by someone reputable. Look out for a label or plug on top/on the side of the door for the rating mark.
If your fire door is left open, or is ill-fitting, then it will not offer any protection against smoke or flames. Check that your door closes firmly onto its latch and that all of its seals are appropriately intact – with zero signs of damage.
Correct signage on all of your existing fire doors is a legal safety requirement. Make sure you affix signs to your door that match the intended usage of that door – for example ‘’keep locked’’, ‘’keep shut’’, or for automatic doors, ‘’keep clear’’. FPC recommends photoluminescent safety signs, as they can be read in all conditions.
Fire Safety Solutions with FPC:
FPC stands at the forefront of all things fire-safety related, pioneering the latest developments and offering a range of specialty products, which we design, try and test personally. We now have over 30 years of experience across a range of industries, including medical, electrical, construction, council, and HVAC. Feel confident that you are being supplied with nothing but the best quality, as all of our products and fire doors have certified efficacy insurance, which we wouldn’t offer if we weren’t fully assured of our product effectiveness.
If you still looking to learn more about fire doors during this Fire-Door Safety Week, why not read two of our other relevant blogs? These are ‘’Fire Safety Products For Doors’’ and Fire Door Regulations Explained. If you would like to know more about how we could supply you and your business with fire safety solutions, or if you have any further questions regarding the information presented throughout this blog, then please do not hesitate to get in touch! Our team would love to hear from you and would be more than happy to help out.