wired glass

Wired glass

The glass lites in some doors of older buildings, especially in public facilities built in the 1970s, have what appears to be chicken wire within the glass. Wired glass was an early form of safety glazing, as the wire would catch much of the glass and prevent it from falling. The glass was also frequently treated with a fire retardant to prevent the glass from breakage if exposed to high temperatures and the wire to hold it together in case it did break. This combination was an early type of fire-rated glass and protected inhabitants from fire and possibly smoke on the opposite side of the door. While it can successfully help protect occupants from a fire or certain other situations, wired glass itself can present other hazards. When the glass surrounding the wires does break, the exposed wires can cause injury if a person physically comes in contact with them. As glass safety has evolved, the need and desire for traditional wired glass has declined and other solutions have become available.

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