05 Jan Emergency Escape Lighting
Emergency Escape Lighting, Standby Lighting, Escape Route Lighting
Emergency escape lighting is part of an emergency lighting system which is provided to enable normal activities to continue. It is sub-divided into escape route lighting, open area and high-risk area lighting.
When the loss of mains electricity fails it could be the result of a fire or power cut and the normal lighting supplies fail. This can then lead to sudden darkness and a danger to people within the building, either through danger or panic. Furthermore, emergency lighting is normally required to operate fully automatically giving illumination which is of a high level to enable people to be able to evacuate the premises in a safe manner. Most new buildings have emergency lighting installed during the construction phase, the equipment and design are specified by the architect in accordance with the relevant Building Regulations and any local authority requirements.
The difference between the various types of lighting
Emergency lighting this comes on when power supply to a normal lighting system fails. There are two forms of this lighting escape lighting and standby lighting.
Emergency Escape Lighting
This is part of an emergency lighting system which provides illumination for people to leave a building or location safely. It is part of the fire safety provision of buildings and a requirement of The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
Emergency escape systems should normally cover
- Exit doors
- Any escape routes
- Intersections of the corridors
- Outside exits
- External escape routes
- Next to emergency escape signs
- Floor levels and stairways
- Rooms which have no windows and exceed 8m2
- Anywhere fire equipment is placed
- Fire alarm points
- In lifts
- Areas which are in buildings greater than 60m2
Part of an emergency lighting system this is provided to enable people to continue normal activities to continue substantially unchanged. This guide does not include any standby lighting as it is not a legal requirement, this may or may not be needed depending on the use and occupancy of the building or premises.
Escape Route Lighting
Another form of lighting which is part of an emergency escape lighting system. This is provided to ensure that means of escape are effective, identified and occupants are lead safely out of the building.
Open Area Lighting
Otherwise sometimes known as anti-panic lighting. Again this is part of an emergency escape lighting system. It’s there to help minimise panic and ensure sufficient illumination for the occupants of the building to reach an escape route out of the building.
High Task Area Lighting
A system which provides illumination for the safety of all people involved in a potentially dangerous process or situation. It enables proper shut-down procedures for not just the operator but also others occupants who are in the building.
When energy and cost saving is important, this type of system is fast becoming the new choice of light source. Especially with the government offering incentives to businesses for switching to low energy products. More and more businesses are having this type of lighting installed in their businesses.
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