Emergency exit doors are a prime aspect of many safety management strategies inside the workplace or in any establishment for that matter. An emergency exit door that’s well placed can save countless lives in the worst-case scenarios.
It may seem like an easy task to do but believe it or not, designing your emergency exit at work is actually tough work. There’s a lot of planning involved into it this is why it’s often best to leave emergency plans at the hands of professionals says Workplace Emergency.
Here are a few pointers to keep in mind.
1. Emergency Exit Door Placement
The emergency exit door should be placed in an area where there are the least chances of a fire happening. Placing it near areas that are prone to fires means there’s a chance that the place might be impossible to pass through in worst case scenarios.
Some areas where the door should not be placed include the kitchen or any spot where there’s a flammable source nearby.
As for the doors themselves, they should lead to a large and open outdoor area. This is the safest place for employees during a fire. Typically, this is the place where employees regroup and organize themselves after an emergency inside the workplace.
The doors should also be in a place where people can see them easily. The more visible the door is, the easier it will be for employees to escape.
2. Make It Standout
Emergency doors are supposed to stand out. They don’t need to blend in.
What that means is that you should pick design options that will help the door be more visible. A good colour for an emergency exit door is red. In the case of a fire or an earthquake, people can see these very easily even in dimly lit areas. Alternatively, you can paint the door’s handles with black and yellow stripes.
Another way to make the door stand out is to install neon lights featuring the word “EXIT” on the top of the door, or even attached to the ceiling. The power typically goes out during an emergency but these types of lights are connected to emergency power sources so they can guide people still.
When designing an emergency exit door, focus more on making sure that the door stands out. Its appearance or how it compliments should not matter at all.
3. How Many Emergency Exit Doors?
This depends on how large the establishment is. However, the in most places, there are at least two emergency exit doors that people can use to head out to safety. Having only one is a bad idea.
By having multiple emergency exit doors, employees are able to leave the establishment more safely because some doors might be nearer. Another advantage is that multiple exit doors mean that there’s always a way out even if the other exits are no longer passable or useable.
Lastly, make sure to put it two, three, and even more, exits are the establishment is occupied by many people at a time. This prevents people from crowding into one exit during an emergency.
4. Guide Your Employees Towards Emergency Exit Doors
Proper workplace emergency plans include letting your employees know the way out to safety. You can help them out in many ways regarding this.
One would be to post directions that lead to the emergency exit doors. Put up these signs in high hazard areas or in common areas. The map or the directions leading to the workplace need to be easy to understand so that everyone can follow them easily.
It’s also a good idea to orient employees on what they should do in the case of an emergency. This of course involves teaching them the safest and most optimal routes to take to get to the emergency exit door.
5. Use The Right Materials
The emergency exit doors should be foolproof.
They should not easily catch on fire and should be safe to handle in fires and other emergencies. For instance, when painting the door, make sure to use fire-resistant paint so that the doors remain safe from flames. Recoat the pain at least once a year to be safe.
Also, remember that there are standards to follow when it comes to workplace emergency plans. Always keep these standards in mind. They aren’t just for the safety of those that are inside the establishment, these are also there to ensure that a building is as safe as possible.
Designing an emergency exit door is both a tough and essential task. You need to take it very seriously as the lives of those in the workplace will depend on how well the door is placed and designed. With these tips at least, you know what you need to do when it’s your turn to design it.