Fire Stopping

What is fire stopping?

A firestop is a fire protection system made of various components used to seal openings and joints in fire-resistance rated wall and/or floor assemblies.

Firestops are designed to restore the fire-resistance ratings of wall and/or floor assemblies by impeding the spread of fire by filling the openings with fire-resistant materials. Unprotected openings in fire separations cancel out the fire-resistance ratings of the fire separations, allowing the spread of fire, usually past the limits of the fire safety plan of a building.

Fire stopping is critical to the fire safety of a building. Breaches in fire compartments are a disaster for any building which relies on escape routes and the prevention of hot gases and smoke spreading, particularly where sleeping accommodation is present.

Fire stopping is one of the most important fire safety measures, yet it is often misunderstood and ignored in a large proportion of occupied buildings.

The right products, combined with 'competent' contractors, are vital if fire compartments are to be both heat- and smoke-tight. This involves fire stopping in vulnerable and sometimes inaccessible areas of the building including roof spaces and basements.

All our products meet British Standards and our contractors are part of a third party Approved Installers Scheme administered by us. The scheme involves close supervision of contractors as they carry out work, as well as quality checks upon completion of all fire stopping that is carried out. Until then, work will not be signed off or certified as suitable and sufficient.

We work closely with architects and project management teams to ensure that a joint approach is adopted. We also ensure that fire stopping is properly recorded with photographic evidence, and that copies of this are entered into the buildings health and safety file.

Compartmentation in structures is the fundamental basis and aim of passive fire protection.

The idea is to divide a structure into "fire compartments", which may contain single or multiple rooms, for the purpose of limiting the spread of fire, smoke and flue gases, in order to enable the three goals of fire protection:
●  Life safety
●  Property protection
●  Continuity of operations

The construction of such compartments and all their components is a matter of systems within systems, which use bounding to achieve fire-resistance ratings, all interdependent, forming part of an overall fire safety plan.

Specialist knowledge is required to understand the fire strategy of a building and how the occupants might react in an emergency. It is this knowledge, training, and experience, which allow us at Active Fire Doors to determine where physical compartment walls, floors, ceilings and doors are, where they should be.

Understanding the structure of a building, and how the emergency fire evacuation plan works, is of paramount importance. Especially if there is a sleeping risk, or occupants are 'dependant' or 'highly dependent', such as in care homes or hospitals. In these circumstances the evacuation plan of a building will normally require 'Phased Horizontal Evacuation' (PHE) and specifically designed and intact fire compartments are necessary.

We have designed fire strategies and carried out fire compartmentation surveys since 2002 and are experts in this field. We use this knowledge and experience to determine whether existing buildings meet current fire safety standards and if compartment lines are intact and 'suitable and sufficient'.

Our surveyors visit site, assess the compartments and check on fire stopping around these compartments including all required fire door assemblies. A report is then produced and an action plan presented with a quote for any necessary work.

If you would like any further information about fire compartmentation, please contact us and one of our specialist advisors will discuss your requirements.

Enquire about our fire stopping:
Premier Fire Doors fire compartmentation