A method used in many situations to hold a door open. It was and is used specifically on ships cabin doors to stop them swinging and banging against other woodwork as the ship moved due to wave action. The use of cabin hooks spread to other situations where a door was required to be held open, where a self closing device is used to close the door. Wind action may cause a door to swing and damage itself, so a cabin hook is used to hold it steady.
It is often difficult to open a fire door because of its weight. Where people are frail or small and have little strength to open the doors, particularly in schools and care homes, the doors are held open by other means. These other means include door wedges, misused fire extinguishers, cabin hooks and magnetic door holders.
The purpose of the fire door is to separate different parts of the building and to protect people. It cannot work if it is held open by some means that requires a persons intervention to close. In a fire situation all people will be trying to escape and will have little time or thought to close doors held by cabin hooks or wedges. For this reason Cabin hooks, fire extinguishers and wedges should never be used on fire doors. Where there is a need to hold such a door open, then a magnetic door holder should be used. The magnetic device will release when the buildings electrical fire alarm system is activated by a fire.
Cabin hooks have their place - not on fire doors. Always close your bedroom door when you sleep. Always keep fire doors closed they will prevent the spread of smoke and fire to give you chance to escape.
General Fire Safety. All Fire Services offer the same advice.