Hospitals can have free-swing fire doors and stay compliant

freedorThe Royal Liverpool University Hospital is a large hospital in the city of Liverpool. It has the countries biggest emergency department and is home to more than 40 wards and 710 beds. It is no wonder that a hospital on this scale found difficulties navigating patients on beds and in wheel chairs through their fire doors fitted with door closers. Mike Farrell, Fire Safety Advisor at the hospital said “Day-to-day, the staff at the hospital are constantly walking through entrances with trolleys and pushing beds so they need easy access. We found that doors were being wedged open as they are very heavy and difficult to get through.”

Although the wedging open of the fire doors may have made it easier for staff to negate the problematic fire doors it introduced a serious issue. Wedging a fire door open is illegal and puts lives at risk. A closed fire door prevents the spread of fire and protects staff and patients within the hospital. If the fire door cannot close in case of a fire, smoke and fire will spread through the building. Mike Farrell wanted to find a solution that would enable his staff to transport patients easily from one department to another and still comply with the fire safety regulations.

Freedor, a wireless free-swing door closer, offered Mike just the solution he was looking for. Fitted to the top of the door instead of the ordinary fire door closer, Freedor allows the fire door to be pushed open with ease. The door can also be left open at any angle. The device listens for the fire alarm and on hearing the alarm will automatically close the fire door, giving the required protection from the spread of fire. Mike commented “Following a trial, our staff were so pleased that we had Freedors installed on the entrance to the ward. It’s a financially viable option being cost effective as the product is wireless. It has made life so much easier for all our staff, they have easier access and it requires minimal effort to open and close the doors when they need to. We are now looking at purchasing more in the future.”

If you would like more information or advice on Freedor please contact Safelincs Ltd on 0800 612 6537 or send an email to support@safelincs.co.uk