Door Group, a unit of ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions UK & Ireland, is calling for higher standards of fire door inspections, after concerns were raised surrounding fire safety in healthcare environments.
Recent statistics reveal an increase in both the number of fires recorded and the number of people sustaining injuries from fires in NHS trusts across England . Shockingly, 1,560 fires were recorded in the 2019/2020 period, and there were 46 injuries, which was a significant increase of over 35% when compared with 2018/2019.
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 requires healthcare organisations undertake risk assessments to identify the general fire precautions needed to safeguard occupants in case of fire, including their safe means of escape. But with fire protection systems failing time and time again, it is clear that more needs to be done.
Fire doors are one of the most important safety features in a building, and regular inspections are essential to fully ensure health and safety measures are met. Healthcare buildings can present highly specific requirements for fire doorsets, with particularly varied legislation and building regulations surrounding fire doors in hospitals.
Lee Cook, Door Group Business Development Manager for Repair, Service and Maintenance, explains: “As part of our commitment to fire door safety in hospitals, Door Group provide a fully comprehensive inspection which can be carried out every three, four, six or 12 months to suit specific requirements.
“Following inspections, we then offer detailed reports containing advice and recommendations on necessary improvements, with the knowledge that identifying any potential issues that could impact safety and product performance can be lifesaving.
“If any issues do occur, a tailored repair proposal is issued to include anything from replacement doors to a regular maintenance program. Door Group inspectors are BRE‑certified and will ensure that all fire doors inspected meet all necessary standards and regulations.”
Brian Sofley, Managing Director for Door Group, adds: “The figures we’re seeing regarding fires and injuries from fires in the healthcare sector are a great cause for concern. Hospitals should be a safe and secure environment for staff and patients, without worries around fire safety.
“Door Group is committed to making hospitals and other healthcare institutions across the UK fire protected. With regular and thorough inspections, we can ensure the compliance and performance of fire doorsets to improve overall fire safety within the sector.”
 Estates Returns Information Collection Summary page and dataset for ERIC 2019/20: https://digital.nhs.uk/data‑and‑information/publications/statistical/estates‑returns‑information‑collection/england‑2019‑20