Occupant Health and Successful Door Hardware Upgrades
Coronavirus considerations join the list of issues managers must weigh in specifying door hardware components
Anything that limits authorized access or egress is a weakness and a vulnerability in facility security, safety and occupant health. The latest addition to the list of issues in this area is the coronavirus and the resulting disease, COVID-19. The virus can remain active on surfaces of door hardware components for days or even weeks and, unless addressed properly, can create problems for managers and their organizations.
While common flu and other viruses — including SARS, MERS and other coronavirus strains — are very deadly, they are known quantities. COVID-19 was unknown until the latter part of 2019. Medications and vaccine developments are in progress, but none are widely available yet. Containment and remediation recommendations are continually being updated by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and include the following:
• Daily, clean all surfaces, including door hardware, keys, cell phones, key fobs, workstations, keyboards, touchscreens, countertops and elevator buttons using a cleaning solution or soap and water. Then disinfect with a solution of at least 70 percent alcohol
• Wear disposable gloves, and clean hands immediately after glove removal.
• Use disinfectants registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
• Use cleaners appropriate for the surface, and follow manufacturers’ instructions for application and ventilation.
Ensuring facility safety and occupant security and health require immediate action, including greater attention to cleaning and disinfecting all the components of the door security system, including door handles and knobs, keypads, locks, keys, exit bars, door frames, actuator buttons, proximity readers and cards, biometric readers, turnstiles and revolving doors.