Printed from the blog of Lori Greene, AHC/CDC, CCPR, FDAI
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May 15 2015

FF: Latch Preventer

Today’s Fixed-it Friday photo came from Paul Cernak of Allegion.  It’s another creatively-ingenious lockdown method that is not code-compliant.  The white block is attached to the frame with a magnet.  The outside lever of the active leaf is kept in the locked position, and the block prevents the door from closing completely.  The door may be pulled open from the outside even though it is locked, because the door does not latch when the block is in place.  If a lockdown is required, the block is pulled out of position, dangles from the string (nice touch!), and the door closes.  Once latched, the door is already locked, preventing access.

Because this is a fire door, it must close and latch to deter the spread of smoke and flames.  NFPA 80 addresses products which do not latch each time the door closes, but requires that “in a fire emergency, the door becomes positively latched by means of an automatic fail-safe device that is activated by an automatic fire detector.”  Devices which prevent positive latching and are not released by the fire alarm system (like magnets that cover the strike or products that hold the door open slightly) are not in compliance with the NFPA 80 requirements for fire doors.

Latch Preventer

9 Responses to “FF: Latch Preventer”

  1. Austin B says:

    Well, necessity IS the mother of invention. Too bad this invention threatens life safety. I gotta give it up to whoever devised this though. I think they took a page out of Wile E Coyote’s book!

  2. Cda says:

    And appears a home pull down shade on the door!

    Lori is the white circle on the face of the door one of those pins???

    Have not paid attention over the years so have not seen one

  3. Rick Parker says:

    Well, on the one hand the left a nice handle for the “vertically challenged” to release the block. On the other hand, those coming through the door can expect a nice wack on the head for taking advantage of the non-compliant door stop. Seems like Pavlov at work…

  4. Al Dennis says:

    The white circle is a constant latching flush bolt.

  5. David Moyer says:

    If only the string was a little longer and the eye hook a little lower, then when “released”, the block could fall and hit someone on the head, perhaps knocking some sense into them!

  6. Jim Hooker says:

    I saw one this week, rubber bands over each lever and across the latch bolt…

  7. lach says:

    Some people have some real “attractive” ideas. One might say it’s almost “magnetic”!

  8. J Payton says:

    Is it me or does it also seem that the left door has “something” ( cardboard maybe) wadded up and holding it open also. Because it appears that the left door is not sealed against the door frame.

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