The Blueprint for Code Compliant Emergency Exit Stairways

We all know that when emergency strikes to head for the exit stairwells and get out of the building as quickly and safely as possible. Serving such a critical role in emergency egress safety, it is crucial emergency exit stairwells are equipped to handle such a situation.

Local and international building, fire and life safety codes require the installation of luminous egress path markings in exit stairwells in new and existing high-rise commercial buildings, in order to provide a safe egress passageway, and potentially saving lives in the process.

Where to install Luminous Egress Path Markings

Why Photoluminescent Egress Path Markings?

Unlike traditional emergency exit lighting, which requires batteries or back up power, photoluminescent egress path markings operate completely independently of a building’s power system and do not require any maintenance or regular inspections to operate at their highest capacity.

Luminous egress path markings and photoluminescent signs gain charge from surrounding light sources, either natural or artificial, and then release that light again as luminescence after power has been lost, providing a bright glow in the dark light.

As they are completely fail-safe and provide a bright-glow, luminous egress path markings are the ideal solution for emergency exit lighting in stair wells.

Where are Photoluminescent Egress Path Markings Installed?

To provide sufficient light and reliable visibility to give occupants the confidence to quickly and safely egress a building, there are several key locations within emergency exit stairwells which photoluminescent egress path markings are required.

Here is a brief breakdown of what is required.

Floor Identification Signs

See IFC/IBC 1023.9

Floor identification signs communicate vital egress information, such as the location of and direction to the exit discharge as well as the availability of roof access. The photoluminescent signs shall be applied 5 feet above the floor and shall be located on every floor.

Step-Edge Markings

See IFC/IBC 1025.2.5

To provide step-edge visibility and reduce the risk of slips and trips, a solid, continuous photoluminescent strip shall be applied along the full length or the horizontal leading edge of each step.

Handrail Strips

See IFC/IBC 1024.2.3

To provide additional visibility on the stairways, a solid, continuous luminescent strip shall be applied along the top side of the handrail strip.

Perimeter Demarcation Line

See IFC/IBC 1025.2.4

Either wall or floor mounted, perimeter demarcation strips clearing outline the egress pathway and keep occupants safely within the egress path, and avoiding obstacles. A continuous photoluminescent strip shall be applied around the perimeter of the exit pathway.

Obstruction Markings

See IFC/IBC 102

To keep a clear exit path and ensure occupant safety, all obstacles along the exit pathway should be clearly marked with a continuous strip, compromised of a pattern of alternating equal bands of black and luminous material.

Photoluminescent Egress Path Markings on Final Exit Doors

To keep egress instructions clear, photoluminescent egress path markings are applied only to final exit doors.

Door Frame Markings

See IFC/IBC 1025.2.6.3

To clearly mark the final exit door, a continuous strip of luminous material shall be applied along the top and sies of the door.

Door Hardware Markings

See IFC/IBC 1025.2.6.

Photoluminescent markings shall be applied behind, immediately adjacent to or on the door handle or escutcheon.

Emergency Exit System

See IFC/IBC 1025.2.6.1

Exit doors shall be marked with a low-level luminous emergency exit symbol, centered horizontally. To comply with NYC LL141, directional and running man exit signs are required to be installed on every floor.

Be prepared for any emergency, by installing luminous egress path markings in your building’s exit stairways. These fail-safe egress enhance egress speeds in every lighting condition and can potentially save lives.

Ecoglo has developed a patented manufacturing process in order to supply the most durable, longest-lasting luminous egress path markings and photoluminescent signs available. Talk to one of our code compliance experts to create a complete system of code compliant luminous egress path markings!