This Sunday marks the 20th celebration of World Standards Day. But, what are standards and why are they worth celebrating?
A standard is a document that sets out specifications, procedures and guidelines that aim to ensure products are safe, consistent and reliable. Standards aren’t limited to security products – they cover many aspects of modern life, from consumer products and services through to construction, energy management and health and safety.
On its own, a standard is completely voluntary. That said, both State and Commonwealth governments frequently refer to Australia Standards (AS) or Australian/New Zealand Standards (AS/NZS) in their legislation. When this occurs, compliance to a standard becomes mandatory.
Standards may have been developed at an international, regional or national level as International Standards developed by bodies such as the ISO, IEC and ITU. In today’s blog post, we’ll take a look at some common Australian Standards that you may come across when shopping for security products.
An IP Code is a two-digit number that is used to signify the protection a casing provides against intrusion from solid particles and liquid. In Australia, the IP Code is covered by Australian Standard AS 60529—2004. Keep an eye out for IP Codes when you’re shopping for consumer electronics, as it’s a much better indication of durability than wafty marketing speak, like “waterproof” and the like.
The first digit of the code signifies the protection from solid particles and ranges from 0 (no protection) through to 6 (dust tight). The second digit indicates the level of protection from the intrusion of water and ranges from 0 (no protection) to 8 (suitable for immersion in water up to 1 metre).
The Noke Padlock, for example, boasts an IP rating of IP66. This IP rating means the Noke features both dust-tight protection and can withstand water projected from powerful jets without harm. In other words, its suitable for locking up your bike outdoors on a rainy day.
Fire doors are used to compartmentalise buildings to help reduce the spread of fire and smoke. A fire door rating indicates how long a door set can withstand a fire. Correspondingly, all door hardware (such as locks, doors closers, hinges and peepholes) on a fire door must be fire rated too, as the hardware used could adversely affect the fire door’s ability to resist a fire. For example, an incorrectly fitted door closer could result in the door not shutting and sealing, allowing smoke to flow through to the next compartment.
In Australia, the conditions that need to be met to receive a certain fire rating are outlined in the Australian Standard, AS 1905.1- 2005, Part 1: Fire Resistant Doorsets.
The Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (DDA) promotes equal rights, equal opportunity and equal access for people living with a disability. Door hardware plays an important role in reducing and removing physical access barriers faced by people living with a disability. In Australia, the standard governing DDA compliance falls under BCA AS1428.1 -2009. All public access buildings are required to meet this standard. This includes buildings across a variety of areas of life such as educational facilities, hospitals, libraries, entertainment complexes, sporting venues, retail stores and banks to name just a few. Look out for this standard if you’re shopping for a new door handle or door closer.
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