Agrippa Door Closer Provides Solution for Printing Company

Agrippa Free Swing Door CloserWhen East Coast Grafix, a printing company based in Lincolnshire, were replacing some of their fire doors they saw the ideal opportunity to look at how they could improve the movement of their staff within the building.

The main problem the company faced was passing through fire doors when carrying stock from one work area to another. The pull of the normal fire door closers made it difficult to move around the premises. Safelincs’ Agrippa Acoustic Free-Swing door closer gave East Coast Grafix the solution they were looking for. Chris Ashmore from East Coast Grafix said “This product is brilliant.” He went on to say “This is ideal for us as when carrying stacks of paper, the last thing you want is to have to open a spring loaded door and then it trying to close on you.” Staff at East Coast Grafix can now leave the door open at any angle, the fire door now feels and behaves like any other door.

The Agrippa not only gave Chris Ashmore a solution to his problem, it also ensures that he is meeting his legal obligations under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. The Agrippa is a battery operated unit that can learn the specific sound of your fire alarm. When there is no alarm the door closer is dormant, causing no resistance to the user. On hearing your fire alarm the closer will activate, automatically closing the fire door, reducing the risk of a fire spreading and protecting the lives of the occupants and the premises. Agrippa Free-Swing door closers are CE Marked and approved to EN 1155 and EN 1154, they are also suitable for installations needing to comply with BS 7BS 7273-4.

For more information on the Agrippa Free-Swing door closer, or to talk to us about your specific requirements, call our knowledgeable team on 0800 612 6537 or email support@safelincs.co.uk

Angie Dewick-Eisele

Angie Dewick-Eisele

H&S, HR & Marketing Manager

Angie has been our marketing manager since joining in 2002. She also has a keen interest in H&S issues.

Care home residents give Agrippa seal of approval

agrippa-closerResidents at the Westwood Care Home have given the Agrippa free-swing fire door closers their approval, as they provide the option to have their fire doors partially open leaving them feeling less shut off from the rest of the home, whilst retaining some privacy. The Agrippa door closer allows a fire door to be used just like a normal door without the resistance usually associated with fire door closers. However, the moment the closer ‘hears’ a fire alarm, it changes its operating mode and turns into a traditional door closer, closing the fire door to stop the spread of fire and smoke.

Based in an Edwardian Town House in Chorley, Westwood Residential Care Home has chosen to have the wire-free fire door closers installed onto resident’s doors.

Stephanie Crane, Director at Westwood said: “We were searching for an alternative solution to our existing door holders as they were damaging the carpets in the home. The residents at the care home needed a solution to make their doors light and easy to move, whilst closing in the event of a fire.”

Westwood offers a personalised 24-hour quality care service for up to twenty people over the age of 65, delivered by a highly-trained and well experienced team of staff.

The Agrippa fire door closer is a battery powered device providing a safe and legal solution to holding open and closing fire doors. The door closer is discreetly installed at the top of the fire door providing restriction-free movement to make the door light and easy to move.

The closer complies with the Building Regulations Approved Document M Section 3.10 Parts K & L, which state that fire doors should self-close when activated by the fire alarm, when the power supply fails or by a hand-operated switch.

The closer is part of the Agrippa suite of products, which also includes an acoustically triggered fire door holder and pillow fire alarm.

Geofire Agrippa acoustic fire door holders and closers

Safelincs are pleased to launch Geofire’s Agrippa acoustic fire door holders and free-swing fire door closers, featuring industry leading technology that enables the devices to recognise the specific sound of your fire alarm.

Both devices are designed to improve free movement within a building by keeping fire doors open while closing the doors in the event of a fire to stop the spread of fire and smoke through the building. Here is a short description of their principal function:

agrippa-holderFire Door Holders (also called fire door retainers) are installed on fire doors that have already an overhead fire door closer installed. They hold the fire door open against the pressure of the closer and will release the fire door in case of a fire, allowing it to be closed.

 

agrippa-closerFree-Swing Fire Door Closers are installed instead of normal overhead fire door closers. They exert no closing pressure on the door in normal operation, therefore allowing the fire door to swing freely, just like a normal door. In the event of a fire their function changes to that of a normal door closer, forcing the fire door shut.

Most traditional fire door holders and free-swing door closers are connected to the fire alarm system by wire and receive their signal to close from the fire alarm panel. The Agrippa acoustic technology, however, is triggered by the acoustic sound of your smoke alarm or fire alarm system sirens. This is particularly helpful for premises without a fire alarm system and central panel, or where retrofitting a wired system would be problematic. 

Unlike other acoustic fire door holders and fire door closers, Geofire’s Agrippa devices listen to and then learn and recognise the sound of your particular fire alarm siren or smoke alarm, meaning that they won’t trigger your fire door to close if they hear other loud noises. This ground-breaking technology will therefore reduce the number of false door releases.

Both the Agrippa fire door holders and the Agrippa free-swing door closers are wireless and very easy to install on existing or new fire doors. They are fitted to the top of the door in a discreet way and allow you to keep fire doors open legally and effectively giving you the flexibility you need to allow free movement within the building. They enhance the accessibility for the disabled and improve ventilation.

The Agrippa acoustic door holder retains fire doors in the fully open position. No intermediate positions of the fire door are tolerated. The main Agrippa body, containing the sensors and a strong electromagnet, is fitted on the wall behind the door and a steel plate is fitted to the back of the door which the magnet then holds. On hearing your fire alarm the magnet is switched off and the fire door will be closed shut by the closer fitted to your fire door.

In comparison, the Agrippa free-swing door closer allows you to use your fire door like a normal door, meaning that it swings freely and can be left open in any position. When the device hears your fire alarm the integrated door closer will be triggered and closes the door, stopping the spread of fire and smoke.

Keeping fire doors shut or having a system in place that closes fire doors in case of a fire is a legal requirement . A breach of this requirement can lead to prosecution and even prison sentences.

To place an order or to find out more about our Geofire Agrippa products call 01507 464185 or email support@safelincs.co.uk.

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

Fire door closers – how to improve ease of movement within care homes

Freedor Fire Door CloserFor those confined to care homes moving freely within the immediate environment is essential for their well-being and self-esteem. However, fire regulations require that fire doors, such as they are installed in gangways and often in bedrooms, are kept closed to prevent the spread of smoke and flames in the event of a fire. The hydraulic door closers, usually installed for this purpose, make the fire doors difficult to open for the elderly and those who require walking aids. Installing a normal fire door retainer to hold the fire door open against the pressure of a traditional door closer does not fully address this problem, as it still requires the fire door to be opened in the first place before it can be retained in the open position.
This is why Free-Swing fire door closers are required. They allow the user to open and close the fire door like any other door – without any resistance. The door can also be left open in any desired position. If the fire alarm goes off the fire door will, of course, close and the occupants of the building are protected against the spread of fire and smoke.

Some of Safelincs’ free-swing door closers require wiring into the fire alarm panel to ensure the door shutting is closing the door when a fire is detected. Our Freedor free-swing door closer, on the other hand, does not require any wiring at all. Similar to the well known Dorgard manufactured by the same UK company, the Freedor ‘listens’ for the sound of an alarm system and will close the fire door, as soon as the acoustic signal is received. The Freedor unit is battery powered and is also suitable for retro-fitting on existing fire doors.

Harry Dewick-Eisele, Managing Director, Safelincs explains, “The Freedor overcomes the need to install a door closer as well as a retainer. It is fitted in the same position as a traditional fire door closer and deals with the entire issue of the safe opening and closing of fire doors. It is a huge improvement for care homes but also children centres and other public spaces where traditional door closers can lead to difficulties for users.”

If you require any further information call 0800 612 6537 where there are experts on hand to offer advice.

Care home fire safety ruling

After the recent BBC investigation about London care homes not meeting fire safety regulations there has been an important court ruling that will hopefully change the behavior of care home owners and increase the safety of the residents.

The issue  regarding resident bedroom doors, which must be fitted with self closing fire doors, and the risk of these fire doors being wedged open in an illegal manner was addressed. Fire doors are generally heavy and when fitted with a self closing device very hard for an elderly person to open. In the case of care homes fitting bedroom doors with these devices will restrict the mobility and independence of residents. The fear was that care home owners will then wedge the doors open to allow residents to freely move in and out of their bedrooms. This practice is illegal and the judicial ruling now stipulates that self-closing fire doors must be fitted with a device that will hold the door open and which releases the door when a fire alarm is triggered, allowing the fire door to be closed with the door closer to prevent the spread of fire.

This is ruling is paramount in ensuring the safety of vulnerable residents. The solution to this new ruling need not result in having a new system wired into the premises but can be resolved with wireless devices such as Dorgard or Freedor. Both devices are wireless and can be fitted retrospectively to fire doors without the need of an electrician.

The Dorgard can be fitted to any door with a self closing device and will hold the door open until the fire alarm sounds. At this point the door retainer will lift the plunger and the fire door will close. The Freedor works in a similar way but it acts not only as a door holder but also as a door closer, incorporating the two devices in one. This device can hold the fire door open at any angle required and will then release and close the fire door on the sounding of the fire alarm.

Both fire door retainers have a night time closing feature and have adjustable  sensitivity. As the Dorgard and Freedor are both wireless products they can be fitted by a handy man rather than a costly electrician. The Dorgard has a 5 year warranty, which is only available from Safelincs Ltd.

For more information on fire door retainers and door holders please visit our website https://www.safelincs.co.uk/dorgard-and-other-fire-door-retainers/

More information about the judicial ruling can be found at http://www.cpbsonline.eu/pressrelease/pressrelease.aspx?companyname=Fireco&title=Court+Makes+Important+Care+Home+Fire+Safety+Ruling