Three quarters of fire doors failed inspections in 201924 June 2020
More than three quarters (76%) of the fire doors inspected by the Fire Door Inspection Scheme (FDIS) in 2019 were condemned as not fit for purpose. In addition, 63% of the buildings inspected also had additional fire safety issues.
The data, which refers to more than 100,000 inspections in over 2,700 buildings across the UK, also highlighted the challenges with fire door installation. Some 30% of fire doors nationwide were condemned due to poor installation, with problems including excessive gaps around the door and the use of non-compatible foam.
The research was based on a FDIS survey of its inspectors carried out in January and February 2020.
“The buildings that our inspectors visit include sleeping accommodation and those that house the elderly, the disabled, and people with mobility or cognitive needs – some of the most vulnerable in our society,” said Louise Halton, scheme manager of FDIS.
“However, the latest data shows that the vast majority of fire doors are not fit for purpose. This paints a very worrying picture of the fire safety of the UK’s buildings, and one that we must all play a role in changing for the better to help protect lives.”
The data also found that 57% of installed fire doors inspected needed small scale maintenance, with the top three reasons for failures including excessive gaps, smoke sealing issues and poorly adjusted door closers, which would prevent the door performing as designed to hold back the spread of a fire.
Of the buildings inspected, nearly a quarter (24%) of fire doors that were third-party certificated were correctly installed and maintained, while 40% of third-party certificated fire doors were condemned due to poor maintenance and 36% due to both poor installation and poor maintenance.
“The biggest concern for our inspectors is the lack of knowledge that people have about fire doors,” said Ms Halton.
FDIS Certificated Inspectors are uniquely trained to undertake fire door inspections. You can search for a fire door inspector with confidence, by using the FDIS Find an Inspector tool.
The Fire Door Inspection Scheme (FDIS) was launched as a joint venture by the British Woodworking Federation (BWF) and the Guild of Architectural Ironmongers (GAI) in 2012.