TORC Top Tip for Tenants: Door Closers and Fire Safety

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At the recent annual house inspections, the TORC FM team discovered that a large number of households had removed the ‘Door Closers’ from the internal doors. This is extremely dangerous and puts residents at risk of death from fire.

Residents may feel like ‘Door Closers’ are inconvenient or too heavy to open. However, they are an essential safety measure to protect against fires spreading in apartment buildings or 3-story homes. They MUST NOT be removed, disabled or wedged open.

Door Closers can be adjusted to make them easier to manage. Contact the Repairs Team if you would like to request that your door closer is adjusted.

Do Not Remove Fire Door Closers

Door Closers are an essential safety measure to protect against fires spreading in houses and apartment buildings and they MUST NOT be removed, disabled or wedged open. Under Fire Safety Information, on page 69 of the TORC Resident Handbook, it states that residents must “never interfere with fire doors in your home by removing door closers”.

If it is found that that door closers have been removed, residents will be requested to reinstate them. A follow up inspection from the Facilities Management team will be required.

Self-Closing Door Devices and Building Regulations

All doors in TORC homes have a minimum fire rating. The properties that have a floor level higher than 4.5 meters above ground level must have fire doors fitted with automatic ‘self-closing devices’ for each habitable room, according to Building Regulations.

A Door Closer is a type of standard hardware designed to close a door automatically after it has been opened. It’s usually mounted on the top of doors or on the door frame. Their primary purpose is to comply with fire safety. They ensure that fire doors are never left open in a way that might facilitate the spread of a fire.

Closed Doors Save Lives

When doors are closed during a house fire, the source of air to the fire is cut off. This starves the fire of oxygen and provides an effective barrier to temporarily inhibit the spread of the flames and the smoke. This allows firefighters enough time to respond to the fire and for residents to escape from the building.

A closed door holding back fire and smoke could be the difference between life and death for you and your family.

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