Here's the scenario: You are in a room and you notice that there is a HUGE fire and not to mention smoke spreading from the outside while a megaphone siren is sounding through the building. What do you do? Holding open fire doors or closing them yourself when they SHOULD be automated to prevent the further spread of fire is very dangerous – not to mention ILLEGAL under the fire safety laws of the United Kingdom. (There is a reason why they are called FIRE doors.) Amid expensive and somewhat impractical magnetic powered fire door closing systems, I have found one gem that is more effective, cost efficient, safe and very much LEGAL for use in our country. This nifty fire door device is none other than the Dorgard.
Basically, the device works this way: The fire doors are of course, usually left open most of the time for people passing back and forth. The idea of a fire door is that it is closed when a fire does occur and it is designed in such a way that it does not let fire spread from room to room. What the device does is to automate all of these processes – it holds open the door but it will automatically close once it detects the sound of a fire alarm system, megaphone siren or something similar for 14 straight seconds at more than 60 decibels. It is battery operated, easy to install, very safe and legal for commercial use.
The nice thing about Dorgard is that since it is sound activated, it does not need some sort of wiring for it to work. It is virtually "plug and play" in the sense that it takes out all the complications and puts the fire door safety function in one small and convenient package. It can also be manually operated when not in a fire emergency situation. Thus, you can literally keep it open all the time and it will close only during an actual fire.
It is important then, to make sure that you install the fire door correctly beforehand. This involves the good advice of a fire engineer while it is under construction or by a fire marshall in any other case. By doing so, you save the most amount of time, money and effort in using a fire door to safeguard your area. Since the Fire Safety Order (2005) was ratified a few years ago, this requirement has been implemented strictly and thus one needs to seriously consider consulting with the fire experts before operating your business and most preferably even before the construction begins.
The Dorgard like any other fire safety peripheral is a convenient add on and is not to be substituted for a complete Fire Risk Assessment. It also needs to be tested with your megaphone siren or your fire alarm system to see if it is working correctly. In an actual fire, remember that it is illegal to operate the fire door manually and thus this device can be considered quite essential. It is then a convenient, cost effective and THE legal way in operating your establishment's fire door.