Door Hardware Selection Must Consider Occupant Safety and Security

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By James Piper, P.E. June 2017 – Doors & Hardware   Article Use Policy

When considering issues of safety and security for their buildings, some facility managers have a sense that the two are mutually exclusive. This is particularly true when they are evaluating options concerning door hardware. Steps taken to improve the security of the installation are perceived as being directly detrimental to the safety of the building occupants. And measures adopted to enhance safety are thought to have a negative effect on overall building security. For them, it is a no-win situation.

In reality, there is a way to achieve a balance between life safety and security. It comes from first developing an understanding of doors and hardware, code requirements, and what the real security requirements are of the application. It also involves development of construction or renovation specifications, and continues throughout the life of the facility in the form of regular inspections, good maintenance practices, and education of building occupants.

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