Door & Hardware Federation (DHF) announces it will be hosting two free fire safety seminars in the coming months. Taking place on 11th February and 17th March at DHF’s head office and training academy in Tamworth, the morning seminars will primarily appeal to those with responsibility for compliance, fire safety, asset management and procurement within local authorities and housing associations in the West Midlands area. DHF plans to offer these seminars to those beyond the immediate region, later in the year. Building Regulations And Industry Standards The seminars, both of which start at 09:30am and include lunch, will comprise two presentations. The first, delivered by DHF’s General Manager & Secretary Michael Skelding, is entitled: ‘Fire Safety, some comments on doors and hardware after Grenfell’, and focuses on the outcomes of the initial inquiry, in addition to how the doors and hardware performed. This will be followed by a second presentation delivered by Gerda’s Head of Communications This will be followed by a second presentation delivered by Gerda’s Head of Communications, Fiona Critchley, who is also the Chair of DHF’s Timber Doorset Group. This will focus on the guidance document ‘A Guide for Selecting Flat Entrance Doorsets’ and will highlight the criteria to take into account when specifying a flat entrance doorset, in addition to building regulations and industry standards, referring to the most recent recommendations from the Grenfell Tower Inquiry Phase 1 Report Overview. Free Half-Day Fire Door Safety Seminars Widely considered as the ‘go to’ experts for technical advice, training and raising industry standards, and actively involved in the technical committees of the Industry Response Group, formed in response to Dame Judith Hackitt’s Report: ‘Building a Safer Future’, DHF is well placed to offer these seminars in collaboration with Gerda. The federation also works on BSI Standards Committees, with compliance authorities HSE and Trading Standards as well as fire safety organisations in the UK and Europe. “We are delighted to be offering these free half-day fire door safety seminars for local authorities and housing associations in the West Midlands,” said DHF’s Commercial Manager, Patricia Sowsbery-Stevens. “Uptake on both dates is already high, but DHF has every intention of rolling these out beyond the region as the year progresses. Gerda, which is based in Suffolk, will also play host to the seminars later in the year, but in the meantime, we look forward to welcoming people to Tamworth, from the wider community.”
Tamworth-based trade association, DHF (Door & Hardware Federation), has published a new downloadable document for the industrial door sector, named Changes to CE marking of Fire and Smoke Resisting Industrial Doors. The long-awaited publication reveals what is required, and is to be used, in conjunction with DHF TS012:2019 and is now accessible from the federation’s website. CE marking of powered doors, whether fire/smoke resisting or not, has been mandatory under the Machinery Directive since 1995; this remains a constant and will not change. Mandatory Compliance As of November 2019, there will be significant additional requirements for CE marking of both powered and manual fire and smoke resisting doors covered by EN 13241:2003+A2:2016. This is because compliance with the Construction Products Regulation (EU) 305/2011 (CPR) becomes mandatory for both manual and powered fire resisting industrial doors on this date. Many manufacturers have been CE marking their products under the new rules Whilst many manufacturers have been CE marking their products under the new rules on a voluntary basis during the co-existence period, the new rule will become compulsory from November 2019. In Conjunction With DHF TS 012 “DHF’s new publication is supplementary to, and should be used in conjunction with, DHF TS 012, and covers industrial doors and shop front shutters covering doorways that have fire/smoke resisting properties. It is important to note that it does not cover pedestrian doors, except for retail shutters (which clearly resemble a shutter in a warehouse more than they do a hinged or sliding pedestrian fire door). For CE marking purposes, only fire test evidence to EN 1634-1 can be used,” explains DHF’s General Manager and Secretary, Michael Skelding. “Existing fire shutters tested to BS 476-22 remain acceptable, but fire shutters placed on the market after 1 November this year will need the CE mark. As well as fire test evidence, the CE mark must be supported by evidence of the shutter’s ability to self-close and its safety in everyday use. We hope that our new guide will help to make this clear. It is worth noting that fire shutters, new or old, are not exempt from normal health and safety rules for doors in a workplace.”
Bob Perry would "like to see these become mandatory requirements to deliver building regulations" dhf (Door & Hardware Federation) has welcomed recommendations made in the Independent Review of Building Regulations and Fire Safety’s Interim Report, published on 18 December that those working on the design, construction, inspection and maintenance of complex and high-risk buildings are suitably qualified. Competency is crucial “We fully support the proposals presented by this report, particularly pertaining to appropriate qualification of those responsible for manufacture, installation, repair and maintenance,” says dhf’s CEO, Bob Perry. “We have been actively lobbying for this and are pleased to work with other bodies in the industry to achieve this objective. “The issue of competence is crucial to fire doors as to many other systems within the building. In the case of fire doors, however, the system is uniquely vulnerable to damage caused by use and abuse. This necessitates a high level of maintenance activity, which must be continually undertaken by competent persons throughout the life of the building, not solely during the construction phase or major refurbishment. We would like to see these four elements become mandatory requirements to deliver simplification and underpin building regulation.” Just last month, the Tamworth-based trade association stressed the importance of compartmentation, and called for urgent change in building regulations, urging the UK government to adopt and enforce a mandatory requirement for all fire doors to be factory-prepared doorsets. Proposals for change Michael Skelding, dhf General Manager added, “We propose that any fire - or smoke - resistant door should be a factory-prepared doorset, manufactured under a third-party certification scheme, which is itself accredited by UKAS. Installation and maintenance of the doorsets should be undertaken only by companies certified to do so under a UKAS-accredited third-party certification scheme.” And the organisation has asserted that the UK should follow Europe’s lead in providing more thorough fire door maintenance procedures, which can ultimately, save lives. Should a building owner be unable to provide these reports, the consequences include insurers being able to withdraw their cover “Currently, we are lagging behind our European neighbours, but the appropriate changes would bring the UK in line with many other developed nations and help to ensure that inadequate standards do not lead to tragedy, such as Grenfell,” says Bob. “France is a good example of a country that has more stringent fire door maintenance procedures in place.” Following France's lead France’s Article R. 122-16 of the Construction and Housing Code states it is the building owner’s responsibility to perform the necessary maintenance checks to ensure that fire doors fitted throughout a site are operating correctly. These inspections are carried out by trained professionals, as part of an accredited and recognised maintenance contract. Furthermore, all relevant staff are aware of what these maintenance checks include and how often they need to be carried out, with any maintenance inspections undertaken properly documented. Should a building owner be unable to provide these reports, the potential consequences include insurers being able to withdraw their cover, due to a lack of evidence that the necessary maintenance checks have taken place.