Fire exit door refers to final exit door leading to the outside of a building, although the term is also refer to doors inside the building leading to the final fire exit. The purpose of the fire exit door is to allow a quick and unhindered escape through a well lit door into a place of safety while stopping unauthorised access from the outside. It can also be opened from the outside with key-lock overriding the lock.
Fire exit doors should open easily and, wherever possible, in the direction of traffic flow. If it is a security door it is usually kept locked and can be used by members of the public in an emergency situation. The locking device is usually a panic or push bar. It is not necessary for a fire exit door at the end of the escape route to be fire resistance. The doors must never be obstructed and have to be clearly marked and well lit. There should be fire exit signs fitted above the doors.
In an ideal world, you wouldn’t have to worry about locking doors, but leaving one unlocked you can almost guarantee you’ll have uninvited guests. However, this presents a problem. From purely a security perspective, you would want the most advanced locks fitted and keys would be kept by a select few. But you can’t just consider security – especially if it’s a fire escape door. What does the law say about these doors, and how do you manage both the security and fire safety risks? In general, doors on escape routes shouldn’t be fitted with locks, latches, or bolts unless these are simple fastening, which can readily be operated. Although it’s preferable not to fit any secondary locking devices to fire exits. If locking is necessary, there are few points to consider.
Fire exit doors must not be locked or fastened in a way preventing people from opening them in an emergency. Therefore, it is necessary to change the lock to push bar, panic bar or a thumb lock.
Thumb-turn lock offers the ideal security solution for this instant. The above image is a fire door with key lock. This is not ideal as the door needs to be kept lock at all time. If you have locked your door and could not find the key to get out in case of an emergency, what would you do? As it is a community centre the door needs to be fitted with security device for easy exit and cannot be opened from the outside. The thumb lock is the ideal solution for this instance. The door can be locked and unlocked from the inside without the use of a key or compromising on security.
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