Emergency Preparedness: Three Door-Hardware Issues
Door-hardware issues also affect organizations' plans for emergency preparation. Many organizations enhance their facilities' fire safety by organizing evacuation teams and appointing team leaders in each department or area. A team leader's duties related to doors and door hardware must include:
- ensuring proper access and egress by physically checking every door and its hardware for proper operation according to existing codes
- checking that technicians update door hardware in a timely manner to comply with changes in codes
- inspecting designated building areas to ensure all occupants can evacuate quickly in the event of an evacuation.
One approach more managers are taking to deal with the challenges of access, egress, and security is the installation of card locks. These locks provide a time- and date-stamped identification record of each entry and egress. This real-time record of all building occupants and their location is essential to finding everyone in an emergency.
Security personnel also must have a system that detects unauthorized entry, and they cannot guard all entrance doors and interdepartmental access points. Door-surveillance systems with up-to-date security cameras enable one security guard to observe many access points at the same time from a central monitoring point, providing additional safeguards against unauthorized entry or movement into unauthorized areas. A combination of card locks and surveillance cameras often provides facilities with the best opportunity for both security and safety.