Glass

WW: Shattered security – Surviving Red Lake teacher calls for change

I've written several posts about glass used in schools, and many posts about traditional wired glass (refer to the Glass tab above).  A reader recently shared the video below and although it was recorded several years ago it includes very valid information for schools to consider when addressing security.  I can't embed the video, so click the graphic to visit the news site.

By |2015-02-11T21:53:57-04:00February 11th, 2015|Glass, School Security|4 Comments

Security Screens for K-12 Entries

Windows and glass doors are among the most vulnerable access points in a school. Criminals can break glass to climb through or reach in and unlock the entry. The security industry has responded with two solutions to slow down a criminal looking to break into a school building...

By |2015-01-22T07:07:27-04:00January 22nd, 2015|Glass, School Security|18 Comments

School Guard Glass

School Guard Glass is a new product that can retrofit existing 1/4" glass at a cost of about $1,000-$1,200 per full glass door lite, and it kept the testing agent at bay for 6 minutes during independent testing. What do you think?

By |2014-11-19T23:26:10-04:00November 19th, 2014|Glass, School Security|16 Comments

Breaks on Impact, by Rob Botman

It has been a while since I've posted about the hazards of traditional wired glass, but the problem has not gone away.  Although the US codes have changed, there are millions of existing pieces of this glass in schools and other buildings.  Canada has seen several lawsuits lately - 1 worth more than 5 million dollars, and what's particularly interesting is that some of the glass in question met the code requirements in place in Canada at the time of installation, but facilities may still be held liable for wired glass injuries because they should have been aware of the hazard and addressed it.  I am posting the article below with permission from the author, Rob Botman.  The article first appeared in Glass Canada, and a reprint can be downloaded by clicking here.  There is additional information about the requirements for glazing on the Glass tab above.^

By |2016-01-06T11:18:57-04:00October 9th, 2014|Glass|0 Comments

School Security in the News

If you search Google News for the words "school" and "security", the search engine will return millions of results.  There are stories about many cities, states, and school districts working on plans and funding to increase the safety and security of their schools.  There are reports about incidents at schools, and products that may help improve security.  It's tough to wade through it all.  The following articles address the topic with a slightly different focus.

By |2017-05-25T15:41:29-04:00December 16th, 2013|Glass, Locks & Keys, News, School Security|2 Comments

WW: Are the kids to blame?

Last Friday I posted an article about a school district settlement with a student, after a severe injury due to impact with traditional wired glass.  The article mentioned that a "15-year-old high school student fell while climbing atop a stack of rolled up wrestling mats."  What the article didn't say was that the mats had been rolled up between practices, and the student was helping to set up - the mats were stuck together and he climbed up to help free the mat and slipped, impacting the glass.  His injury was horrific, and he's lucky to be alive.

By |2014-08-22T22:56:18-04:00June 19th, 2013|Glass, Wordless Wednesday|14 Comments

School District Settles for $2 Million and Apologizes

I've gotten in the habit of looking at wired glass to see if it has a certification mark for impact-resistance.  Almost none of the existing wired glass that I've seen has the mark, which means that unless it has field-applied film (I haven't spotted any film yet), it is extremely hazardous.  When I see kids running down the school corridors or swarming the exit at the end of the school day, I worry about impact with the glass, and the resulting injuries.  Our kids are supposed to be safe at school, but the majority of schools have traditional wired glass in place.  And if administrators think they are protected from liability, a precedent is being set that indicates otherwise...

By |2013-06-19T01:25:34-04:00June 14th, 2013|Glass, News|11 Comments

The Clock is Ticking

Last month I posted an article by Kenneth T. Lumb about the liability that schools carry with regard to non-impact-resistant wired glass.  I received a comment from former Oregon State Senator Vicki Walker, who has been an instrumental and passionate force in removing traditional wired glass from Oregon schools.  With her permission, I have posted her comment below (or click here to download a PDF version). 

By |2017-12-07T22:57:14-04:00June 10th, 2013|Glass|0 Comments

More Wired Glass in the News

A couple of weeks ago I started a series of blog posts about the hazards of traditional wired glass.  I showed you some examples of traditional wired glass installed where it shouldn't be, and linked to some news reports which described incidents involving traditional wired glass.  In case those didn't convince you that we have a problem, here are a couple more:

By |2013-01-28T15:22:41-04:00January 28th, 2013|Glass|2 Comments

RM Global

A couple of weeks ago I got a notification that someone wanted to connect with me on LinkedIn, and it turned out to be an architect that I worked with on several projects many moons ago, Reese Schroeder.  When I checked out his profile I found that he is the co-founder and Director of Product Development for RM Global.  The company creates and manufactures absolutely gorgeous art glass, including glass doors.  Their secret process results in a resolution of 4,000 dpi at 36 billion color potential - far exceeding the range of the human eye.

By |2016-02-03T10:37:48-04:00August 9th, 2010|Beautiful Doors, Glass|2 Comments

Glass Door Hardware

I spend a lot of time with architects, and sometimes I'm put in the awkward position of having to talk them out of trying to do something with doors that hasn't been successfully done before.  Many times this involves glass doors, which are becoming more common, yet still have very few options for hardware.  It's tough to make a glass door do anything innovative, when all of the locking hardware is paired with a fixed pull handle.

By |2014-06-27T20:44:33-04:00July 25th, 2010|Doors Gone Wrong, Glass, Panic Hardware|4 Comments

Glass (and Glasses)

Someone asked me a question recently that I had to stop and think about. In the old days, wire glass could only be used in fire doors. It could not be used in non-rated doors. The question was, "Can the wire glass that meets the impact resistance requirements be used in non-rated doors?"

By |2013-02-09T01:06:14-04:00April 20th, 2010|FDAI, Glass|1 Comment

Glass Door Fails

I'm not a big fan of glass doors because the options for hardware are so limited, but they do supply some interesting fail moments. You'd think that after multiple people ran into the same sidelite, they'd stick on some fake snowflakes or something...

By |2012-01-27T22:07:34-04:00April 9th, 2010|Glass, Videos|2 Comments

Lite Location

When I started working in the hardware industry, we regularly supplied doors with a 10" x 10" vision lite (type V in the Steelcraft graphic below), which was typically installed approximately 63" from the center of the lite to the floor.  This configuration would no longer be acceptable according to some current accessibility standards.  The 2003 edition of ICC/ANSI A117.1 states that if a door has a vision lite or an adjacent sidelite which permits viewing, at least one lite in the door or the sidelite has to be located with its bottom edge not more than 43" above the floor.  There is an exception for lites with their bottom edge more than 66" above the floor, which would apply to transom lites or residential entry doors with lites at the top.

By |2017-05-15T09:22:42-04:00November 9th, 2009|Accessibility, Glass|0 Comments

Glass Challenge

A couple of weeks ago, one of our specwriters called to ask me this question and I knew the answer immediately.  Then...hmmm...I thought about it, and talked to myself for a while as he sat on the other end of the phone waiting for both of my selves to come to an agreement.

By |2013-09-01T09:10:33-04:00September 9th, 2009|Glass, New England Codes|3 Comments

Glass Doors with Electric Strikes

I'm currently working on several projects that have glass doors in walls that are acting as 1-hour fire barriers with closely-spaced sprinkler heads above the glass.  The problem with this application from a hardware standpoint is that the Blumcraft, CR Laurence, and Dorma Glas panic hardware that is typically used on glass doors does not have active trim (like a lever handle) to retract the latch from the secure side.  To unlock these doors, you would typically use the dogging feature of the panic device to leave the doors in a push/pull condition, but because they require positive latching, dogging is not an option.  I have searched the world over for a solution to this problem, but the only possibility I've found so far is using fail secure electric strikes to release the latches.  Unfortunately, this application is extremely noisy, as illustrated by the video below.  If anyone has any ideas, I'd love to hear from you.

By |2012-12-18T15:05:47-04:00April 2nd, 2009|Glass, Videos|10 Comments

Blumcraft Center Housing

I am running into more and more all-glass doors on my projects, and in the words of one of the contractors I'm working with, "Doors are being asked to do things they've never done before."  I've had large glass panels pivoting at the center, glass doors acting as opening protectives in fire-rated walls, and glass doors with all types of electrified hardware applications - all with invisible wires, of course.  Given the limited options available for glass door hardware, it's often a real challenge to specify hardware that meets the functional and aesthetic requirements for the project.  On one project I specified Schlage mortise locks installed in Blumcraft center housings and it was a great solution.  The glass door manufacturer had no problem accommodating them, the architect was happy with the way they looked, and I had the full range of lock functions to choose from.

By |2014-05-23T22:04:19-04:00March 27th, 2009|Glass, Panic Hardware|0 Comments

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