Facility managers are risking the safety of visitors and staff and fines of up to £2,000 per incident by failing to ensure fire doors are unlocked and unblocked. Penalties can reach £100,000 for multiple offences from a single fire safety inspection.
A new smartphone app, Lodgic, enables facility managers to check that fire doors are attended and unlocked during opening hours, and then secured again at the correct time, for just £12 per month, which includes 24-7 remote monitoring.
The app is downloaded by staff and features a ‘tour’ program with a pre-set activity log; a message and alarm prompts the user to check each fire door and scan a printed QR barcode with the camera function at a pre-set time, which can vary with opening hours.
At the Lodgic control centre at Redditch, software remotely monitors the activity logged on the app. There is an automatic alert if scheduled activity is not completed at a pre-set time and a series of warning prompts sent to the user; if the task is not completed then the centre manager is alerted and will phone the site manager. If there is no response, escalation can include contacting head office or the emergency services.
The scanning of each barcode is time stamped, with the location recorded from the smartphone’s GPS system – so there is a record for management and fire inspection authorities.
“Many sites fail to manage multiple fire doors consistently across several sites; locking times vary and you’re reliant on a staff member to remember. The app gives the site manager – and senior management – the reassurance that all fire doors are under control at every site, at all times,” says Simon Chapman, of Lodge Service, who operate the Lodgic app and control centre service.
Other services available include patrol and response and ‘ad hoc’ guarding, with the intelligence centre despatching teams to repair damage or secure a site when required.
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