A safety organisation is warning of a “tragedy waiting to happen” because three quarters of fire doors fail to meet the required standard.
The Fire Door Inspection Scheme’s data, based on over 100,000 inspections last year, found that 75 per cent failed to meet the required standards.
Private housing, housing association buildings, council premises and healthcare buildings were the worst offenders.
Louise Halton, FDIS scheme manager, says: “A tragedy is simply waiting to happen … but this situation is entirely preventable and, at this stage, still reversible. A fit for purpose fire door can save lives, so now is the time for all of those responsible for fire safety to urgently inspect fire doors in their buildings and act immediately if faults are identified.”
The most common reasons for inspection failure - which can be a result of one or multiple issues - were excessive gaps between the door and the frame, care and maintenance issues, and issues over smoke sealing.
In almost a third of cases, inspections failed due to improper installation – meaning those doors were never fit to perform the task of holding back fire and smoke.
The inspection data also revealed inspectors’ top three fire safety concerns as a lack of fire door maintenance, and poor knowledge of fire safety responsibilities and a limited understanding of the role fire doors play in keeping people safe by those responsible for building fire safety.
However since the introduction of the Building Safety Bill - now the Building Safety Act 2022 - the substantial majority of inspectors have seen an increase in demand for fire door inspections.
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