For fire safety, building structures should ensure that any openings and gaps needed for services like water, gas or communications are fully sealed, so as to resist both lateral and vertical spread during a fire. This is a type of passive fire prevention referred to as firestopping.
Firestopping will look to seal any unprotected horizontal and vertical penetrations in a fire resistance rated wall or floor assembly, thus allowing it to impede the spread of fire and smoke. For penetrating cables, these can also be called Multi Cable Transits (MCTS).
Fire stopping is life-saving, however in a fire, every element will react differently, so delivering effective protection will mean looking at each element separately. A qualified fire-stopping profession will consider:
- Electrical, mechanical, and structural penetrations.
- Unpenetrated openings (such as openings for future use).
- Re-entries of existing firestops.
- Control or sway joints in fire-resistance-rated wall or floor assemblies.
- Junctions between fire-resistance-rated wall or floor assemblies.
- Head-of-wall (HOW) joints, where non-load-bearing wall assemblies meet floor assemblies.
Tests are carried out in accordance with the general principles of BS 476: Part 20: 1987 or BS EN 1366-3: 2004 and BS EN 1366-4: 2006, and like fire doors, fire stopping installations should receive regular checks to ensure they continue to be fit for purpose.
Dragon Fire Doors offers Fire Stopping as part of our service.