I’d love to know who did this, so I can give them a good talking-to (maybe they’ll read this and track me down like the semi-concealed closer installer).
This photo was taken in a restaurant by one of my coworkers. The tables and chairs are blocking the door, and someone trying to exit would have to notice the deadbolt and know how to retract the latch. The deadbolt is below the allowable height for accessible hardware (36″ minimum above finished floor in Massachusetts, 34″ in most other states), and the thumbturn is not an accessible turn, which is able to be operated without tight grasping, pinching, or twisting of the wrist.
This restaurant opened recently, and the fit-up would most likely have been done under the 8th edition of the Massachusetts State Building Code (based on the 2009 IBC), which states that on Assembly occupancies with an occupant load of 50 or more, doors can not be equipped with a lock or latch unless it is panic hardware. My coworker and I talked about whether the restaurant could try to use the “THIS DOOR TO REMAIN UNLOCKED WHILE BUILDING IS OCCUPIED” get-out-of-jail-free card, but a) that’s only allowed on the main exterior door, b) there’s no signage, c) that section actually refers to key-operated locks and they must be readily-identifiable as locked, and d) additional locks are not allowed with panic hardware.
I’ve already covered most of these topics, so here are some links to previous posts:
- Mounting heights for accessible hardware.
- Accessible thumbturns.
- New occupant load requirements for panic hardware.
- Single-operation egress.
- Key-operated locks on the main entrance of certain occupancies.
I’ve emailed the restaurant and will let you know what I hear in response.
Here are the “other” choices left by poll responders:
Is there a mechanism connecting the panic hardware to the deadbolt? (no)
Report it to the fire marshal AND follow up. If not, call the tv news.
The person who signed the occupancy permit is the one that should be reported.