I've been asked today's quick question three times in the last two weeks, so I have updated the post with the references from the current codes. Is it acceptable by code to install a louver (fusible link or other type) in a fire door?
With the number of apartments in a metropolis like New York City, and the prevalence of fires in multifamily buildings, how are code officials ever going to get a handle on the non-code-compliant conditions?
Today's post is my next Decoded column, for the School Security + Safety issue of Door Security + Safety Magazine. Let me know if you have any suggestions before it goes to print!
One of the highest-security projects I ever specified was a state data center, and along with vascular readers and multiple interlocks, the project required high security door position sensors. These sensors are now available from Schlage!
I'm not sure how or why this happened, but between the two motions to exit and the concrete block "step" to get up and out of the window well, it's a no from me. Happy Fixed-it Friday!
Today's Quick Question: Can on-call rooms in a hospital have occupancy indicator deadbolts that are separate from the latchsets, or do these doors have to unlatch with one releasing motion?
Marc Zolner of Allegion sent me today's Wordless Wednesday photo, taken in a sports facility. For whatever reason, this type of building is a common location for non-code-compliant exits. How many problems do you see?
Last week, several people sent me a link to this photo, which ran on various media sites with an AP article about the MLB lockout. I couldn't resist turning it into a teachable moment - not about baseball, of course...about panic hardware. :)
Logan Piburn sent me these photos the other day and asked for my opinion. Based on the model code excerpts in this post, would you consider these egress doors code-compliant? WWYD?
I received today's Fixed-it Friday photo from Eyal Bedrik of Entry Systems Ltd. It gives a whole new meaning to the term "panic bar." Cheers! :-)
As a follow-up to yesterday's post, I want to share a new resource that we can use to help educate school administrators, parents, students, and others about school safety and security. It is a collaboration between PASS and Safe and Sound Schools:
Some days I just want to give up on reading the news. A Nashville news station posted a report recently asking why more Tennessee schools are not using classroom barricade devices, and I'm wordless.
I often wonder how in the world exits can be blocked, or have hardware that has been modified and will not allow egress - sometimes for YEARS - without anyone noticing. I think the answer may have something to do with today's Quick Question.
Great news! Webinar Wednesdays are back, along with a new Security in 30 session coming up this month! Electrified hardware, automatic operators, hollow metal doors and frames...which classes will you attend?
Whether it's a smoking dryer in the laundry room or something more serious, fire door assemblies play a very important role in a building's fire protection system - even if most people don't realize it. Another fire door win!
The Rhythm Club Fire in Natchez, Mississippi is yet another example of how egress doors can impact life safety during a fire. This video from the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation shares some important information about the lessons learned.
A proposed change to Michigan law would allow classroom barricade devices to be installed on spaces like gymnasiums, libraries, auditoriums, and cafeterias. How can we help legislators see the potential implications of this decision?
This story from WWLTV does a great job of illustrating the importance of compartmentalizing a building for fire protection. It focuses on the firestopping at the new MSY airport in New Orleans, and discusses the potential results of voids that are not code-compliant.
Today's Quick Question...A school district wants to use chains and padlocks to secure the school buildings at night and on weekends. Do the model codes allow this when the building is not occupied?
There was a time when trimming doors in the field was common. With most doors now arriving prefit, prebeveled, and premachined from the manufacturer, they should not need to be undersized further in the field.
I have to admit...I was very disappointed when a document from the U.S. government referenced security methods that could conflict with the adopted codes. But there's a new (and improved!) edition of the K-12 School Security Guide!
Today's Wordless Wednesday photos of a security checkpoint in a high school are a great illustration of how easy it is to overlook egress and other code requirements when our attention is focused elsewhere.
I will be publishing several sets of frequently asked questions this year, with more detailed supporting articles on each topic. If you have a FAQ that you'd like to add to the list, leave it in the comment box and I will include it in a future article.
NIST - National Institute of Standards and Technology investigated the Station Nightclub Fire and published a list of 10 recommendations based on their findings. Recommendation 5 was related to egress...
Andy Lindenberg of Allegion sent me today's Fixed-it Friday photos. Although I've seen poorly-placed floor stops with a second stop added later, I don't think I've ever seen a floor-mounted wall stop thrown into the mix!
Today I would like to take a moment to acknowledge the passing of one of my very favorite people in the door and hardware industry, Bob Jutzi. Jutzi passed away on February 15, 2022, at the age of 76, surrounded by his loved ones and his dog Lula.
A documentary has just been released on PBS as part of the Independent Lens series. It is a detailed and often disturbing look at the measures schools are taking to ensure that students and staff feel safe. "The wolf is in the henhouse." #wordless
Does anyone out there have an example of a lockdown plan meeting the requirements of the International Fire Code (IFC)? I'd like to share it with the life safety manager of a university who is looking to see what other facilities are using. WWYD?
If you missed registering for any of the learning opportunities I mentioned last week, you can still access these informative sessions! Last week's presentations are available on-demand, and there are more scheduled for this week and next!
I love when readers of iDigHardware send me photos of the doors they see as they go about their business, but what I REALLY love is when readers' spouses, kids, parents, and friends start taking photos of doors! :D
I was recently asked to create a class for locksmiths, installers, or others who are looking for a crash course on the most frequently-asked code questions related to door openings. And here it is! Share it with all who could benefit from this training!
Several news stories left me wordless this past week...ANOTHER apartment fire in the Bronx with an open door, funding to cut the bottom of classroom doors (including fire doors) to increase ventilation, and parliament fire doors latched open.
On behalf of an iDigHardware reader, I need help from someone with a really long memory or a better filing system than mine. Where did the limit of 30 pounds to set the door in motion and 15 pounds to open the door fully come from?
There are some great learning opportunities coming up - a two-hour webinar on fire door assemblies from Door Safety, an Allegion Security in 30 session, and an ICC panel discussion on tornado awareness...which one(s) will you attend?
Today's Fixed-it Friday photo was posted by Fran Van Blargan on the Locksmith Nation Facebook page, and I couldn't resist asking to share it on iDigHardware. So...what's wrong with this picture? What's the code issue here?
I worked on several GSA projects back when I was writing hardware specifications, and I don't remember ever seeing the facilities standards that have been published by the GSA, addressing certain types of federal projects. Here are the highlights...
When I saw these photos on the Locksmith's Journal Facebook page, I was wordless. Luckily, I was given permission to share them here! This door looks like it has seen better days. What do you think?
There are still details that have not been released regarding the January 9th fire in a Bronx apartment building. Why didn't the apartment door and the stairwell door close and help prevent the smoke from spreading?
Is there a code requirement that would prohibit the installation of automatic operators above an acoustical tile ceiling? Would the working space required by NFPA 70 - National Electrical Code apply here?
After an I-Team investigation, a Bronx landlord repaired fire door problems in their apartment buildings, including doors to stairwells, trash rooms, and apartments that were not self-closing. Here is a follow-up story from News 4.
Today's Quick Question: How can a fire be 1000 times more likely to occur in a school than an active shooter event? I read about school shootings all the time, and I never hear about fires in schools.
I received this photo of a fire door in a hotel stairwell from Gabriel Montoya of Jansen Ornamental Supply. You might be thinking to yourself, "This doesn't leave me wordless...I see stuff like this all the time!" That's the point.
After reading yesterday's post about the advisory recently published by PASS, a reader recommended that I share another valuable PASS resource - a fact sheet discussing 5 reasons schools should avoid using classroom barricade devices that are not code-compliant.
There are concerns associated with barricade devices that can trap building occupants as well as delaying or preventing access by emergency responders. A statement from the Partner Alliance for Safer Schools (PASS) explains the potential dangers...
Today's Fixed-it Friday photo, sent in by Pat Little of Penner Doors & Hardware, is a classic! It was taken in the lunchroom at a construction site in Saskatchewan, Canada...this "fix" will keep out the bears, right??
A recent fire in a Bronx apartment building is yet another reminder of the importance of code-compliant fire door assemblies and the need for enforcement of the fire door inspections mandated by current codes and standards.
Today's Wordless Wednesday photo was sent in by Robbie McCabe of McCabe Consulting. The door, frame, and hardware were approved to be reused - they were in great shape. The installers did a fantastic job. Just one little problem...
This article on controlled egress locks in health care facilities will be published in Locksmith Ledger, as a follow-up article to one I wrote last fall comparing the requirements of the model codes for delayed egress applications.
I have represented the Allegion brands since 1994, but these days it's not the norm to work for the same company for decades. This week's Security in 30 session addresses the important topic of attracting and retaining talent. Join us!
As I'm working on some educational materials about fire doors for people who are not familiar with code requirements or with doors and hardware, I'm realizing that most people don't know how fire door assemblies are tested.