Qatar and Saudi ArabiaBefore I get to the door-related news, my friend John Diedam from Masonite Architectural asked me to post information about an upcoming Architecture Services Trade Mission to Qatar, with an optional stop in Saudi Arabia.  The trip is organized by the United States Department of Commerce with support from the American Institute of Architects.  Both Qatar and Saudi Arabia have hundreds of billions of dollars worth of projects planned or in progress, and U.S. companies need to travel to the region to develop strong working relationships with locally based architects, developers, and local officials, in order to become involved with these projects.  The deadline is August 30th, so check here for more information.


Some recent articles and news reports that involve fire doors and egress doors…

“I can’t believe how effective the fire door was at retaining the heat!” – BWF Certifire

“I can’t believe how effective the fire door was at containing the heat, the garage is completely destroyed but there was no damage to the summer house, it will just need redecorating. I hope our case shows people just how effective fire doors are. ”

Keith Brooks, Head of Prevention and Protection at Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “This case is a perfect example of how important fire doors are when a fire breaks out both in the home and the workplace. They play a critical element in saving lives and property and should never be propped open. We would advise people to also get into the habit of closing all doors as a matter of course to prevent fire spreading and at the first sign of fire get out and call 999″.


Teen girl identified as victim in Manhattan apartment building fire – New York Daily News

An overloaded power strip tucked under some furniture in a first floor bedroom of the W. 136th St. building sparked the 5:45 p.m. blaze, FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro said.

The fire quickly spread because the first-floor tenant left his door open when he escaped the fire.

“I would imagine that (Melissa) exited into the stairwell at a time when the fire was at its greatest and it did not take long for her to succumb to the heat and smoke once that happened,” Nigro said.


Made in Michigan safety device could prevent school shootings (click link to view video) – WZZM-13

[LG: I do not support the use of security devices that do not meet egress requirements.  The Authority Having Jurisdiction should be consulted for approval before installation of similar products.]

Fed up with violence, a Michigan father has invented a simple, inexpensive device to keep students safe in their classrooms. It’s called The Boot, and the Reeths-Puffer School District is the first in West Michigan to have it installed.

“We’re expanding quickly,” said Rob Couturier, as he and his employees at the Lockdown Company got to work in Reeths-Puffer schools. The boots are slabs of metal used to jam classroom doors within seconds of a teacher feeling threatened.


Officials: Closed door limits Hazel fire damage – Murray Ledger and Times

Lidia Davison said she always has made a habit of closing the door to a back bedroom of the two-story house in which she lives in Hazel.

Friday, Calloway County Fire Rescue Chief Tommy Morgan said that habit probably prevented major damage when a fire began in the area of that bedroom at about 11 a.m., at the house at 201 Barnett St. The door being closed prevented the fire from spreading throughout the house, it was noted.


Factory safety is improving in Bangladesh—but it still takes three months to get a new fire door – Quartz

According to the Alliance’s first annual report, the Bangladeshi government only recently responded to complaints from the alliance and trade associations about tariffs on safety equipment that was doubling or tripling the cost of necessary upgrades. About month ago, they eliminated the tariffs. Previously, an imported fire door from China cost about $961, according to the report. Now, that same door costs about $374. But even without the tariffs, the system is hardly seamless. The door is only produced in China once the Bangladeshi factory has placed an order and issued a letter of credit for payment—and then there’s customs and shipping. That’s why the whole process can take three months.

After completing fire safety training and inspections at 587 factories, the Alliance shut down 10 factories due to structural issues that rendered the buildings unsafe, Spaulding said in a conference call this week. “We feel confident that [the closures] were absolutely necessary to protect lives,” he said.
In addition to those closings, the organization issued correctional plans, addressing issues such as electrical wiring and emergency exits, for almost every inspected factory. The average cost of upgrades and corrections is around $250,000, said Spaulding—a steep price tag for factory owners. The organization is working with the International Monetary Fund to facilitate low-cost loans with funds from the member companies.


Landlord fined over £4000 for breaking fire safety rules – Fire Industry Association

He added: “The kitchen has the highest risk and in this property it was required to have fire doors – because without them you increase the risk of death to any of the occupiers if there was to be a fire.”

Mr Manning was given a fine of £2240, ordered to pay costs of £1941 and a victim surcharge of £28.

Commercial buildings, non-domestic and multi-occupancy premises in England and Wales are already forced to undertake a ‘suitable and sufficient’ fire risk assessment carried out under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

While the overwhelming majority of premises do this, if the assessment is thought to have been carried out to an insufficient extent, the Responsible Person can face an unlimited fine or up to two years in prison.


Little has been done to stop the impossible choice two women had to make to save themselves from a burning unit block – The Daily Telegraph

Many factors combined to make West Terrace such an intense fire.

When the fire started on the balcony Jason Zeng, an illegal immigrant fled who rented a room, fled leaving the balcony door and the front door open.

Acting like a giant bellows, 40km hour wind rushed through the two openings feeding the fire and cutting off escape.

When Revesby firefighters Greg Flynn and Mark Ettridge, got to the 700 degree fire, a solid half a metre wall of flame was roaring out the unit door like a jet engine.

Tiles below them were exploding and Mr Flynn’s gloves burst into flames.

The lift was warped beyond recognition, the balustrade melted and all along the hallway internal fire doors, rated to last a minimum of one hour, were on fire.

“We just kept wetting down the doors, not knowing if people were inside, if they had come out it would have been a nightmare,” Mr Flynn said.


Smoke alarm was crucial in father & son’s escape from burning flat – FIA

A father and his son both escaped from a fierce flat fire this week, after hearing their smoke alarm – they had a lucky escape however, because some of the escape routes were blocked and one fire door had no handle.

London Fire Brigade said: “Both men left the property uninjured before the arrival of the Brigade after hearing their smoke alarm, but firefighters noted the flat’s escape routes put residents at risk. One door was unable to be opened because it had no door handle and the communal corridor was found to be cluttered with household items and buggies.

The Brigade has been actively promoting its Know The Plan campaign this summer, which highlights fire safety in high rise blocks. The plan includes a warning of the dangers of cluttered communal stairwells and hallways, which are affected by one fire every day in London.

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