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Replacement of Fire Doors

Client: Advanced Computer Systems
Value: £7.9k

This client occupies a three storey building, each floor has landings and fire doors into those landings on each floor from each flight of stairs. As a result of a fire risk assessment, it was noted that there were too many gaps around the doors to meet current regulations, and the gaps needed to be reduced.

Fire Door Challenge

At first glance, replacing the doors would appear to be a simple job. However, on investigation we found that the glazed screens were produced many years ago, and each doorset was measured to a different size, so it was highly likely that each of the screens on each floor was made on site, individually. Each of the door sets had different problems with them. The current doors relied on a floor spring that was built into the floor which had since failed, and extra door closers were added with not the correct power to swing the doors properly. Each of the door sets also had different gaps, so it would not be possible to completely manufacture the doors with big windows in them, as when fitted each door pair would be needed to be ‘chopped in’ which would make the windows on the door not line up with the windows either side on the glazed screens. We had to take into account the fact that each screen was different.

The solution was not to try and match vision panels in the doors with the glass in the side screen, but to use a completely different vision panel design.

Existing Fire Doors

As you can see from the above photographs the existing doors had vision panels at approximately the same height as the glass panels on either side. Over the years the doors and frames had dropped, and as the doors had to be planned to fit, it would not be possible to line them up again.

Other Challenges

The old floor springs to close the doors had long since expired and the problem with them is that they could not just be replaced as the parts were no longer available. The whole mechanism had to be taken out and we replaced the hole with stainless steel plates.

Finished Fire Doors

All three floors on each of the landings had to have new doors which now comply with the smalls gaps that are required with fire doors. If you would like to discuss any issues with fire doors, we are happy to help. Please call our office on 01380 73 88 44, or email us using our contact form on this website.


Why have Building Regulations for my offices?

Building Regulations are a legal requirement enforceable by Law. The building regulations are designed so that occupants of a building are safe in the event of a problem or issue. The chances of anything happening are of course pretty remote but they do happen, and when problems happen people can get hurt. The Regulations have not been designed as a set of rules that prevent people from doing what they want do and to be as obstructive as possible, there are very good reasons for them.

They are designed to protect staff within buildings from unscrupulous owners of buildings or directors who do not care, or do not know that they need to comply with the law. We focus on offices, and there are many Building Regulations that relate to all kinds of properties, but offices is our speciality. Building Regulations for offices are not too onerous, and the main thrust of them covers fire protection and access routes for staff to get out of a burning building as safely and as quickly as possible. Associated with this is that it is a mandatory requirements that all commercial premises must have a fire risk assessment carried out every five years, we can organise this if the customer does not have one in place.

Non Compliance to Building Regulations

We come across many offices that have not had any consideration to the Law, offices have been built in the wrong place with no fire rating when they should be and this may be for a number of reasons, it could be that the Interiors company installing the partitioning did not understand the regulations and the customer has instructed the company to install the partitions in on price. Unfortunately it will be the directors of the company who will be in trouble if people can’t get out quickly enough or can’t get out of a building because they employed a fit out contractor that did not give them the right advice, people die and Directors go to jail. Ignorance is no defence in the eyes of the law and it is incumbent on the directors to understand their legal obligations to their staff.

Mezzanine Floors

We have covered Mezzanine Floors in a few places, but this is one of the improvements that people do in offices that is fraught with risk if it is not built properly. If you take on a new space with the floor in place, it may not comply depending on what you are using the floor for. Although you can plead ignorance if you have not determine the proper levels of fire protection, and in the very unlikely event something happens then the Directors are in trouble.

General Advice

We offer a service where we can provide a report which highlights areas that need to be looked at. It will not go into formal detail such as quoting for any work, or actually producing plans and drawings to get Building Regulation approval, it is designed to be before this stage is initiated as it may not be required. The report is designed for Directors to at least highlight areas that should be looked at prior to any work being commissioned as many Directors and owners of buildings do not know that things need to be considered in the first place.

Please give us a call on 01380 73 88 44 to see how we can help

Fire damaged office

Fire damaged office