Monday, October 11, 2010

Washroom Fire Code Violation

I was out for coffee last night at a very large chain. If you live in Canada -- or even if you do not -- you may know it. You can roll-up the rim to win. On the washroom was a simple double sided deadbolt. You know the kind. It makes a prison cell in waiting.

Now as a matter of practice, we are not to 'interpret' fire codes but one line which is a guiding principle run something like the following. A capable person can exit from the room or building without special tools or knowledge. Not much interpretation needed to know a double deadbolt fails this completely. And yet, the hardware exists to do this right. Just off the top of my head are two models which allow a thumbturn inside to only unlock the door so that nobody can lock the multiperson bathroom upon entry. (Large buildings end up with problems like graffiti, drug deals or sex in washrooms if you allow the door to be lockable.) I know the hardware I am thinking is more expensive than the residential mess which was in use but a simple rope would be cheaper than a proper seatbelt. You get my point. They have the cash to use flat-screen TVs to advertise menu items, they can afford good hardware too.

However, this raises another issue. We were encouraged by a member of our local fire department to report violations when we see them and they would investigate. Usually, this mean shooting yourself in your foot since it is your own customer where you find the violation. Should I report this problem? I could get hate from many another locksmith and countless in-house fixers. I would like to hear from you on this.

1 comment:

  1. Life safety is life safety - I think any infractions should be reported, upset customers don't pay the bills but integrity sure helps one sleep.

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