‘Support Fire Door Safety Week’
12th September 2017
WRIGHTSTYLE has written an open letter to its customers, suppliers and specifiers voicing its support for Fire Door Safety Week, which takes place in the last week of this month.
The initiative was set up by the British Woodworking Federation Certifire Scheme and the Fire Door Inspection Scheme to raise awareness of the importance of fire doors as well as installation and maintenance.
In the past, Wrightstyle has raised issues of fire safety certification in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, where it believed that regulations were not being stringently enforced, or where there was a less than optimal understanding of the performance criteria of using systems where components have not been tested together.
The company has also raised concerns with the UK government, specifically on the issue of fire doors being inspected and passed as fire resistant when, in fact, they offer little protection against the passage of fire, smoke or toxic gases.
Chairman Denis Wright said: “The issue seems to be an incomplete understanding and enforcement of fire specifications contained within the Approved Document B and the usage requirements of certification data.
“In practice, and we have first-hand experience of this, for example unlatched doors with untested or incompatible fire-resistant glass are being accepted as fire doors within the regulatory definitions despite the fact that they are clearly not within the permissible limitations of their supplied test certification.
He continued: “British Standards and Building Regulations are there to protect public safety, not least in the event of a catastrophic fire. With regret, when it comes to unlatched fire doors, there requires to be an assessment of current guidelines for fire safety officers, and other authorised fire consultants, and an urgent need to issue further guidance to determine when a glazed door system can be considered a fire door.
“However, for us, new and improved fire safety regulations are only one side of the coin. What is also urgently needed is a complete overhaul of fire safety training, to ensure that those responsible for fire safety inspection have the tools necessary to forensically inspect for absolute compliance.”