This week is Fire Door Safety Week, an initiative that Wrightstyle continues to lend its support to.
As a company in the fire door market, we recognise the importance of properly-fitted fire doors in a fire emergency.
Fire Door Safety Week is all about getting rid of the legacy of fire door neglect and to educate on the importance of fire door safety.
This year, the organisers have conducted research into the current state of fire door maintenance, inspection and replacement programmes.
The research was conducted across local authority-owned and managed housing in the UK.
However, the findings are more than likely to be reflected across other residential or commercial sectors.
They found that 52% of UK local authorities reported delays to planned fire door maintenance and replacement in the first half of 2020.
That number rises to 60% when inspection delays are also factored in.
According to the data obtained from 147 local authorities, at least 26,318 fire doors were scheduled for maintenance or replacement between January and June 2020.
However, COVID-19 meant that 16,580 did not progress – meaning 63% of individual planned works have been delayed.
That adds up to 9,954 individual properties that could be at risk.
In addition, 31% of all responding local authorities stated their fire door inspection programmes were delayed. That affects at least 12,596 fire doors.
It wasn’t all bad news, with several authorities saying that emergency repairs to fire doors had continued to maintain the safety of residents.
Of those local authorities that experienced delays, 65% intend to commence works by the end of the year.
Fire door range
However, 31% of local authorities said that they were yet to set a date for restarting planned works.
At Wrightstyle, we have a range of internal and external fire doors in a variety of formats and specifications.
We know the importance of installing barriers against the passage of smoke, flame and hot gases.
In a social housing context, expert fitting of fire doors, and a programme of regular maintenance is also important.
All too often, we’ve seen badly-fitted fire doors that simply wouldn’t provide adequate fire protection.
For example, In 2019, the Fire Door Inspection Scheme found that 76% of fire doors inspected were condemned as not fit for purpose, with excessive gaps, damaged smoke seals and poorly adjusted door closers the top reasons for failings.
We also recognise that, with many more people working from home, residential fire safety takes on another level of importance.
Local authorities should also recognises that importance and ensure the early completion of all outstanding inspection and replacement programmes.