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High Risk Task Area Emergency Lighting

Designing An Emergency Lighting System: Part 7

High Risk Task Area Emergency Lighting
High Risk Task Area Emergency Lighting

In many emergency situations workers or members of the public will simply be able to stop whatever they’re doing, whether it’s using a computer, shopping or having a bite to eat, and evacuate the building. Some workers however might be in the middle of a high risk task such as using tools or working with machinery. In these situations the person involved must be able to see adequately to allow the safe shut down of machinery or equipment.

Areas of high physical risk include plant control rooms and production lines. In these areas there may not be a clear escape path and good emergency lighting will also be required to highlight any large obstacles or hazards.

BS 5266 Part 1 tells us that at the location of any hazard a minimum of 10% of the normal light source must be supplied by emergency lighting with a minimum light level of 15 Lux. In reality this regulation is unlikely ever to be a problem as it is uncommon for a high risk task area to ever have a normal lighting level of less than 150 Lux.

When designing your emergency lighting system, take into account any areas where workers are doing physical tasks with machinery or tools. It is your responsibility to ensure that they are able to exit the building in an emergency without coming to any harm as a result of poor lighting.

If you are ever in any doubt about the number of emergency lights you should include in a task area, or what constitutes 10% of the normal light level, please consult an emergency lighting system expert or your local fire authority.

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