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A Code Update that’s a Boost to Building Owners!

Archive for the ‘News’ Category

A Code Update that’s a Boost to Building Owners!

Friday, September 28th, 2018

A Code Update that Provides a Boost to Building Owners.

Doors are a major concern for building owners and facility managers. Ongoing maintenance of doors and architectural hardware represents a significant cost margin to building owners and nowhere is this truer than for healthcare facility and engineering managers where building footprints are vast – often in excess of 1 million square feet or more. Maintaining all doors in large facilities is always a challenge, but of even higher concern for healthcare engineers is fire and smoke barrier management, wherein door maintenance is a critical component. This point is not lost on a highly accomplished architect, Amanda Adams AIA, who has spent much of her career in significant restoration projects – she has noted first- hand how important fire and smoke door assemblies become in sustaining code compliance, providing a safe and healthy environment for building occupants and in achieving her overall architectural vision for a space. Ms. Adams highlighted this point to us at AEGIS, wherein she states,

“The foremost requirement of architecture is shelter. This ranks above aesthetics and creative efforts. All building occupants – users, visitors, tenants, residents – expect a building to provide shelter from the elements. At times, emergency situations arise that cause a building to offer shelter or protection from internal threats (often this is a fire threat)….whether that be protect in place or provide a safe exiting scenario. Passive life safety systems hold top priority in life safety; active systems increase safety and provide additional time. Properly functioning fire doors are a critical basic component to the passive system. A door must fit properly in its frame. Closing hardware must work properly. Positive latching hardware completes the barrier.”

Amanda Adams, Architect

The added strain on fiscal responsibilities for healthcare facilities to “do more with less” heightens theneed to challenge installers to do the work right the first time – it is often noted on our annual inspections of fire and smoke door assemblies that the ongoing challenges to maintenance stem from improper installation (i.e., improperly plumbed door frame and jamb, incorrect or insufficient hardware, incorrect door or glazing type, etc.).

According to the Door Security and Safety Foundation, although doors only represent 2 percent of a typical construction budget, more than 30 percent of punch-list items are on average door-related. It is therefore the opinion of many within the industry that it is in the best interest of building owners to verify fire and smoke doors are installed properly from the outset – a determination that committee members of NFPA 80, Standard for Fire Doors and Other Opening Protectives also found imperative. In its most current published editions (2016 and 2019), NFPA 80 prescribes in section 5.2.1 that “upon completion of the installation” these assemblies are to be inspected and tested.

Here at AEGIS we believe as well that a comprehensive survey of door installation during construction benefits the building designer and can dramatically decrease ongoing maintenance costs associated with fire and smoke door assemblies. We are here to help you implement this on your next project and can work with your design team through specification and installation through final punch-out.

What is Fire System Commissioning (FCx)

NFPA 3, Recommended Practice for Commissioning of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems delineates that the commissioning and
integrated testing process would include both active and passive components of fire protection systems. Commissioning is a procedure of verifying a quality process from design inception through development and construction and even extends through the life of the building by ongoing maintenance and operations. Passive fire protection systems, including fire and smoke rated door assemblies, serve as a primary component for most building life safety systems with varying degrees of complexity dependent as such things as occupancy and building geometry. Fire and smoke rated doors are often integrated with fire and life safety systems such as fire alarm, sprinkler, smoke control and emergency electrical systems, and it thus becomes imperative for the fire commissioning team (FCxT) to include qualified fire door commissioning agents (Cx) to be employed. Along with NFPA 3, NFPA also developed NFPA 4, Standard for the Integrated Fire Protection and Life Safety System Testing to work in concert with the recommended practices of commissioning in NFPA 3 to accomplish this task.

AEGIS with its partnerships with engineers and architects, has the practical experience and expertise to support your commissioning team with passive fire protection system components.

– Justin B. Biller, P.E., CHFM, CLSS-HC, CFPS | AEGIS Technical Director

Fire Door Safety Week 2018-Pledge Your Support!

Monday, September 24th, 2018

#FireDoorsSaveLives #AegisFireBarrierConsultants #firedoorsafetyweek

LifeDoor. The Sleep Safely Solution

Monday, September 17th, 2018

We at AEGIS are committed to the values of life safety protection. And when we find other like-minded companies, we won’t hesitate to let you know. Which is why we just couldn’t wait to share our excitement about LifeDoor!

We first found LifeDoor by stumbling upon a post shared on LinkedIn. Two guys with an unbelievably simple but revolutionary idea were looking for supporters to back them on KickStarter. Joel Sellinger, a career firefighter, had seen first hand the life-saving value of closing the bedroom door at night. Together with Ben Docksteader, an engineer and project manager with years of experience bringing new tech to market, the two have created an elegant solution to an inherently human dilemma. Most of us just don’t like to sleep with the bedroom door shut even when told it can save our life in the event of a fire.

So, what exactly does LifeDoor do?  “LifeDoor is a new life-saving invention that keeps your family safe. In the event of a fire, a closed door slows the spread of flames and protects you from smoke and noxious fumes, buying you and your family time to escape to safety. No matter the reason for sleeping with a door open, whether it’s the kids, pets or personal preference, LifeDoor has got your family covered. Our patent pending technology listens for the distinct sound of a smoke detector so you can Sleep Safely.”-www.lifedoor.io

Q: Are my bedroom doors fire doors?

A: Likely not, however a closed bedroom door is a BARRIER that could save your life!

FIRE IS GETTING FASTER. “Because of synthetic materials, furniture and construction, fire spreads faster than ever.” -NIST Technical Note 1455-1 February 2008 Revision . You have approximately 3 minutes to flee to safety.“If you can’t get out of your house, the best thing you can possibly do is get a closed door between you and where the fire is.”Steve Kerber, Director UL Firefighter Safety Research Institute

“About half of home fire deaths result from fires reported between 11 p.m and 7 a.m., when most people are asleep.” -closeyourdoor.org

LifeDoor listens for the sound of your smoke detectors. The smoke alarm triggers LifeDoor to close the door, light the room and sound a secondary alarm. Genius idea, right? With so much attention being put on the importance of sleeping with your bedroom door closed in case of a fire emergency, we are confident LifeDoor is a product that will soon become an industry standard.

 

Q: Shouldn’t my goal be to get out of the house if it’s on fire?

A: Yes! But if you or a loved one can’t, remember that “Fire is FAST, HOT, DARK & DEADLY!  

LifeDoor. Because a closed door could save your life in the event of a fire!

-Karen Aliaga & Stephanie Smith | AEGIS

eVA Registered & SWaM MICRO Certified

Monday, June 18th, 2018

AEGIS is proud announce that we are eVA registered and SWaM micro certified. What does this mean for you?

TAX INCENTIVES! Companies committed to conducting business operations with SWAM certified companies acquire the benefits of federal and state tax incentives. One of the core procurement values throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia is to purchase from SWaM businesses. Virginia prefers to infuse money into its own economy statewide, which is why we are so proud to be SWaM Micro Certified.

900 Degree Difference: Fire Safety Video

Thursday, February 15th, 2018

This dramatic fire safety video below from Underwriters Laboratories explains how closed doors in the home can save lives in a fire. More info on the Close Your Door safety initiative can be found at closeyourdoor.org.


Justin Biller To Speak at Central Virginia SFPE Meeting

Thursday, January 11th, 2018

Justin Biller of Aegis Fire Safety Consultants will speak on January 16th at the meeting of the Central Virginia Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE) in a joint meeting with ASSE.

He will speak on the subject ‘Fire Door Inspections & Field Labeling’ at 4PM.

More details here »

 

Who is Qualified to Inspect Fire Doors Under NFPA 80?

Tuesday, December 5th, 2017

In this intriguing article from Mr. Ron Cote’, NFPA technical services lead for life safety, he poses the question – Who is a qualified person to inspect fire doors under NFPA 80? The answer given may surprise you, as Mr. Cote’ himself describes his own personal lack of understanding of many of the critical components of fire door inspections, despite a highly recognizable career as a fire protection and life safety engineer working for NFPA over several decades in the development of the Life Safety Code.

Late last year, after studying the definition of qualified person, I realized I did not have the requisite skills to perform inspection and testing of fire door assemblies to the degree of detail and completeness required by NFPA 80—for starters, I didn’t know the differences between the door frame elements of face, rabbet, stop, soffit, throat, and jamb. I challenged myself to obtain that knowledge, and in so doing I set out on a path to learn what it might take for someone not working in the door and hardware field to learn what was needed to perform fire door assembly inspection and testing.

Read the rest here »

While nowhere close to the experience Mr. Cote’ has in applying fire and life safety applications in codes and standards, when I began looking into what was necessary to be involved in fire door inspections I too felt very similar feelings of inadequacy about the specifics of fire door hardware and installation. At AEGIS, we also turned to DHI for certification of our professional staff as a Fire Door Assembly Inspector and we agree it is by far the most comprehensive program of instruction and certification currently available in this growing industry.

– Justin Biller, P.E., AEGIS Technical Director

Fire Safety Events & Activities

Monday, February 27th, 2017

We are always active in the fire protection industry, providing training and support to local companies and organizations. Shown at the top is Justin Biller, our technical director, speaking to the Carolinas Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers on fire doors and field labeling issues.

Justin Biller will also be speaking at the Fire Code Expo on Tuesday, February 28th in Columbus, OH on the subject of ‘Fire Doors and Opening Protectives’ and associated field labeling.


Also pictured here is Mark Waller, our executive director, taking time to tour a local fire station with some future firefighters!

VSHE October Meeting

Monday, September 19th, 2016

The Virginia Society of Healthcare Engineers Fall meeting will be held Wednesday, October 5 at the Maridor in Roanoke from 4 to 7PM.

vshe-october-meeting

HDJN Health Facilities Fire Prevention Interview

Tuesday, July 26th, 2016

HDJN

In this audio interview with HDJN’s Megan Dhillon, Justin Biller discusses the new fire safety provisions for health care facilities. Among the changes discussed are the new requirements of NFPA 101, 2012 to have annual fire door inspections and the impact this will have on the survey process. This is a follow-up to the May 9, 2016 client advisory “Update of Fire Protection Guidelines for Certain Health Facilities: CMS Publishes Final Rule on Fire Safety Requirements“.


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We offer fire safety services in Virginia & North Carolina.

(540) 650–3745

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