The Importance Of Well Designed Means Of Egress

Major fire losses are never something your business wants to suffer from. Some very well known major fire losses are The World Trade Center, The Station Nightclub, The Beverly Hills NightClub and The DuPont Plaza.

These fire losses caused significant changes in code requirements, building design, fire safety enforcement and education.

With those events, repetitive failures in design, enforcement and operation of buildings were all discovered.

Even after widespread awareness, repeated violations of the same fire protection principles happen.

The following are just a few of many repeated violations:

  • Blocked exits.
  • Confusing egress paths.
  • Inward swinging doors
  • Inadequate exit signage
  • Combustible interior finish
  • Lack of fire suppression
  • Vertical openings
  • Combustible concealed spaces
  • And more!

It’s our job as fire engineers and citizens to do our best to not repeat tragedies.

Fire safety regulations and the proper fire safety equipment can reduce the chances of major fire losses occurring.

Building and fire codes now require improved fire protection features that have helped save lives and property. These improved fire protection features include active systems such as automatic fire sprinkler systems and fire detection systems. Public education and public awareness also play a major role in saving lives and property.

Because of the improved fire safety codes, there have been 1/3rd less fire deaths the past 25 years in the United States and a 25 percent reduction in property damage.

The means of egress are important. For example, new technology advancements now encourage the use of hardened elevators as overall egress design of buildings. The provisions were adopted into the IBC8 and NFPA 1019. Not only does the use of elevators help disabled building occupants get to safety but provides firefighters a means of reaching the fire scene easier on the upper floors of a building.

Since the 9/11 tragedy, building design is focused on energy efficiency and sustainability.

To protect your building and building occupants, fire inspections should be conducted regularly.

Fire inspections should involve the following activities:

  • Noting changes in building design since the last inspection and making sure these changes are being reviewed for code compliance.
  • Document all potential fire hazards.
  • Effective pre-fire incident plans should be created and updated at all times.

Sprinkler systems, mass notification systems and alarm system connections should all be properly installed and used in buildings.

Fireline can design, furnish and install all types of fire sprinkler systems, fire alarms, emergency exit lights and fire safety equipment. Learn about our fire protection systems by clicking here.

We are a Maryland corporation founded in 1947 by John S. Waters. Fireline remains a pioneer in the fledgling fire equipment distribution business and we have grown to encompass all facets of fire protection. Our Totally Integrated Protection Solutions provide you with a wide variety of services. We can design, install, inspect, or service any type of fire protection system. From fire alarm to fire extinguisher, we do it all.

If you have any questions about Sprinklers, fire equipment, or other Fireline products and services, contact Fireline by calling 410.247.1422 or click here today!

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Source: http://magazine.sfpe.org/occupants-and-egress/means-egress-lessons-learned

This entry was posted on Tuesday, September 11th, 2012 at 5:33 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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