Open door to failure?

The Window Company (Contracts)’s David Thornton responds to the recent debate surrounding the fire doors.

No matter how well a door has been manufactured and tested, it will still fail if it hasn’t been installed correctly.

At The Window Company (Contracts) we recognised this long before the tragedy at Grenfell brought the whole issue into public consciousness, and we became Certified Installers of fire doors in 2016 following training from IFC (International Fire Consultants).

At the time we were responding to a general increase in the number of fire doors being specified by our clients, in particular social housing landlords who were addressing risk factors in their housing stock. We invested in the training because we want to set the highest standards in the industry and all of our fitters who took part reported how useful it was.

Even those with many years’ experience said that they learned important new details.

What continues to concern me though is that, as far as I am aware, there is still no legal requirement for installers to be certified to fit fire doors. Since Grenfell, demand from clients across the public and private sectors for the installation of fire doors has risen dramatically and will no doubt continue to do so for months and even years to come.

Many of these clients though are simply not aware that, even if they choose the highest specification fire door with FD30s or better ratings, these can still be installed by fitters without specialist training.

This is something that we would like to see addressed urgently and we would certainly back efforts from across the industry to make training and certification for installers of fire doors mandatory.

The Window Company Contracts Ltd
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