P50 Service Free Extinguishers reduce risk of infection for pig breeders

One of the UK’s leading pig breeding companies has recently started to introduce Safelincs’ P50 service-free extinguishers throughout its 20 plus farms. The initial driving force behind this initiative was the cost reduction which can be achieved by cutting out ten years of servicing and the refill after 5 years.

The P50 extinguishers are also particularly suited for a tough and muddy environment, as the components will not corrode or deteriorate, even when installed in the open. However, an even more important advantage became apparent after the first installations of the extinguishers were carried out at the first of their sites. Fire extinguisher service engineers in rural areas will cover many farms on their servicing runs and even when the engineers take special precautions to avoid carrying over infections from one farm to the next, the act of removing extinguishers from a site for refilling at the engineer’s base can carry a risk of spreading disease.

A common approach to stopping diseases spreading between farms is to stop an engineer coming on site. Instead, the engineer commonly works on the extinguishers outside of the farm and passes them back once work is complete. However, the same tools will be used as for all other farms and it is unlikely that the engineer is able to clean sufficiently beforehand or to keep the van sufficiently clean to stop passing on bacteria or viruses.

The P50 gets rid of this risk entirely. The Safelincs engineer will supply brand new units packed in original manufacturer’s packaging and will pass these extinguishers (without packaging) through the entry system of a clean farm. After showering-in, the survey and installation takes place and farm staff are trained in the visual inspection of the extinguishers. After that, the extinguishers will not require an outside person to assess the them for a full ten years reducing the risk of disease spreading.

If you are interested in discussing fire protection in your infection-controlled areas with us, please ring us on 0800 612 6537

Difference Between Fire Doors and Fire Exits

The issue of fire doors and fire exits can be confusing for non-professionals in fire safety. If you have to replace some of the doors in your premises with fire doors or you have to improve egress from a building with panic bars on fire exits, it will be helpful to have a clear understanding of the differences between fire doors and fire exits.

A fire door is an internal door, whose purpose is to i) create/protect an escape route through a building in a fire situation; and ii) compartmentalise a fire, to stop flames and smoke spreading from one section of the building to another. Examples of locations of fire doors include stairwells, where they protect the stairs from corridors opening on to them; kitchens/catering facilities, storage areas that house combustible materials such as paper and card, and boiler rooms.

Fire doors have to be kept close at all times unless certified fire door retainers are installed (not just a door wedge!) which hold the fire door open until a fire alarm is set off.

Certified fire doors of solid timber construction are designed to resist the smoke and flames of a fire for a minimum specified length of time, typically 30 minutes (FD30), when closed. Because a fire door is not simply a block of wood in a frame but an assembly of fire resistant parts – door leaf/leaves, door frame, hardware (e.g. locks, latches, hinges, etc), any glazing, smoke/intumescent seals and an automatic closing device – it is also known as a fire doorset.

A fire exit door on the other hand, is an external door; it can be left open and does not have to be fire resistant. The purpose of the fire exit door is to allow a quick and un-hindered escape through a well lit door into a place of safety while stopping un-authorised access from the outside. Fire exits doors should open easily and, wherever possible, in the direction of traffic flow. If it is a security door that is usually kept locked but will be used by members of the public in an emergency situation, it will have to be fitted with a panic or push bar. By enabling the swift passage of people to a place of safety, the final exit door will have performed its function; it does not have to be a fire door to accomplish this. Fire exit doors can also be opened from the outside, if for example a panic bar with a key lock override is fitted. Fire exits must never be obstructed and have to be clearly marked and well lit. Best practice dictates that fire exit signs are fitted above fire exits.

New Adapter Plate to Allow Dorgard to be Fitted to Steel Doors

The Dorgard Fire Door Retainer has traditionally been suitable for use on wooden doors only. The fixing screws supplied with the Dorgard did not allow for installation on steel doors – an application growing in popularity. With the increase in steel door installations, it was evident that an adapter was needed to cater for this requirement.

Working with Fireco, the manufacturers, Safelincs now offer the new self-adhesive adapter plate, which allows for the Dorgard Fire Door Retainer to be installed on a steel door. The adapter is fitted quickly and easily, and the Dorgard can be removed for maintenance purposes from the plate even after the install. The adapter plate is supplied with a chemical cleaning cloth to prepare the door’s surface, and clear instructions for the installation.

Using the Dorgard fitting template as a guide, this allows for the installer to mark out the necessary position of the plate. Once marked, the plate can be secured to the steel door using the self adhesive sticker pads. The Dorgard can then be fixed to the adapter plate using the fixing screws provided.

The adapter plate for steel doors can also be used with the wood effect Dorgard Fire Door Retainers, as well as the metal cover finishes.