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Double key (cylinder) Deadbolts...

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  • Double key (cylinder) Deadbolts...

    Goodness, I'm about to get up to turn off the TV and go to bed when there is news segment on about preventing burglaries -- and they're recommending double key deadbolts!

    I honestly thought such things had been banned, but had to do some quick research and dropped the following note to the TV station (http://www.fox61.com/about/station/feedback/news.html)


    On tonight's Fox61 News (6/8/2001) there was a good segment on protecting yourself from burglaries.

    However, this segment contained one well meaning but potentially dangerous suggestion.

    The Police Officer interviewed showed and recommended the use of a "double key" style deadbolt lock.

    This is the style of deadbolt where a key is needed to open it both from the outside -- and from the inside.

    The use of this style of deadbolt is severely restricted under the Connecticut State Building Code due to serious fire-safety concerns, and it is restricted or banned by most other building codes as well.

    The *only* style of double-key (also known as double cylinder) deadbolt allowed is one that captures the key when locked from the inside -- you can not remove the key when it is locked. Without this feature, a person who is disoriented and blinded by smoke can become trapped behind their own door when they can not find the key to unlock it.

    Unfortunately, many deadbolts are still sold which do not meet this requirement. Someone purchasing a non-compliant deadbolt without knowledge of the building code and the reason behind it are putting themselves at grave risk of being trapped in the event of a fire.

    Perhaps a follow-up segment on the dangers of old-fashion double-key deadbolts would be appropriate.

    Thank You,
    Matt Kivela
    Fire Service Instructor/EMT, Mortlake Fire Co., Brooklyn, CT

  • #2
    I agree with Matt on this. It's another example of the Police thinking about their own jobs a little easier, ie... less burglary and B&E reports to do! They don't have to deal with the aftermath of finding the charred bodies of a family being trapped behind own locked door because they couldn't find a key.

    Firefighters: Today's heroes protecting everyone's tomorrows!
    Captain Gonzo

    [This message has been edited by Captain Gonzo (edited 06-11-2001).]


    • #3
      Matt, I agree with you 100%. The problem is that this code only affects commercial occupancies (Apartments, condos, duplexes), and not private residences. You did make a good piont about telling the public about the Hazards of these though. Goes right along with the residential spriklers. If people only knew, or jobs would be much easier.

      All comments are the opinion of the author, and not of any service they are a member of.


      • #4
        Well, my understanding is in CT it also applies to private residences.

        CT State Building Code is essentially BOCA...any one know the specifics of BOCA on this?


        • #5
          In PA, there are many deadbolts like this. Unfortunately, I don't know if there is a code against it or not, but nonetheless, they exist in residential, commercial, you name it. Where I used to live, we had one, we just always left the key in the lock at night. So, there are certainly ways around it (provided that the occupant has the sense to think that far ahead).

          Stay Safe


          • #6
            On my days off from the FD I do Certificate of Occupancy inspections on a part time basis in a small municipally. We will not issue a C of O in cases where double keyed cylinder dead bolts exist.


            • #7
              Am I missing something? What is the advantage of needing a key from the INSIDE? I would think it's dangerous not only during a fire, but also when you have an intruder or any other emergency. I am thankful that I live in an area where I don't feel the need to even use my deadbolt (which has a knob on the inside). Where would you need a deadbolt like that?


              • #8
                The point to a double-key deadbolt is so someone can't break out a window pane in the door, reach through, and throw the latch from the inside.

                fyi, this came in today's email from the station, with CCs to a couple other station staffers:
                Thanks for your email. Very interesting. Great point. This might indeed
                be worth another report. thanks for your input. Keep watching FOX 61 News!


                • #9
                  << FF's SignfOthr: Am I missing something? What is the advantage of needing a key from the INSIDE? >>

                  I know someone that moved into an area where the threat of mischief exsists. They have a back door with a window. This would have made it easy to break out the window and open the door.

                  I recommended getting a double-cylinder deadbolt. The key is kept nearby (but out of the reach of any bad guys). I don't see the situation as a safety problem.

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