What is a Luminous Egress Path Marking?

You may have noticed in the latest editions of your local or state building codes the requirement for luminous egress path markings in new and existing high-rise commercial buildings. The requirement comes from the adoption of the International Building Code [see IFC 1104.25, 1025]. The term luminous egress path marking may seem unfamiliar, but it is likely you have seen them installed in a number of facilities or even already know them by a different name!

Simply put, a luminous egress path marking product, such as directional signage, step-edge markings or perimeter markings clearly mark the path of egress within any facility. What sets luminous egress path markings apart from traditional exit signage is the fact that they do not require any electricity, wiring, circuits or batteries to shine the way in the dark.

Guiding the Way

Luminous egress path markings work very much the same way as traditional path markings. To ensure safety in any facility it is essential that the exit path way is clearly marked, so no matter the situation or conditions, occupants can safely find their way to the exit discharge, without feeling like they are blindly navigating a maze on their way out.  

Path marking products provide a visual delineation, or indication, of the exit path way. These systems are also installed in order to identify significant egress features, such as doors and door hardware, door frames, step edges, stair landing and banisters, obstacles and to provide important information like floor levels, location of exit discharge and the availability of roof access.

These products, when installed correctly and in accordance with building code compliance, allow occupants to clearly identify the egress path and follow it with ease, significantly enhancing egress speeds.

Why use Luminous Egress Path Marking Systems?

Luminous egress path marking systems provide the same functionality as traditional emergency lighting and path marking products are safer, more dependable and prove to be more cost-effective in the long run.  

Luminous egress path marking products utilize advanced photoluminescent properties. After gaining exposure from a natural or artificial light source, the photoluminescent properties are ready to produce a bright glow-in-the-dark light source that is easily visible and shines brightly without casting shadows, like some overhead lighting does.

Photoluminescent lighting eliminates the need for costly installation by a certified electrician, as it only needs exposure to a natural or artificial light source to perform at its highest capacity.   Consequently, self-luminous egress path markings eliminate the need for regular batter or generator replacement. With very little maintenance, you can trust luminous egress path markings to guide patrons to the exit discharge, safely and effectively, no matter the conditions.

Luminous egress path markings, and any critical information on them, are easily seen in the light so they also serve well to provide occupants with clear exit instructions during normal conditions.

What kind of Luminous Egress Products are available?

The most crucial aspect of egress pathways are stairwells, and as such there are luminous egress path marking products available for every aspect within the stairway.

Step Edge markings are applied to the stair tread and help improve step-edge visibility in all lighting conditions. Many aluminum stair nosings are available with an integrally bonded photoluminescent strip, alongside a non-slip strip. The contrast between the two provides clear step-edge visibility and when the power fails the photoluminescent strip glows brightly, continuing to provide excellent step-edge visibility, reducing the risk of trips and falls.

To further enhance stairway safety the International Building Code sets out requirements for hand rail markings. Marked with a photoluminescent strip, handrails become easily visible in emergency situations to provide support and help guide patrons through the stairway.

To safely keep pedestrians within the egress path during a power outage, perimeter demarcation photoluminescent strips are installed either on the wall or floor to outline the pathway. In the same vein, photoluminescent obstruction markings are installed so pedestrians can navigate the egress pathway safely.

Directional signage, such as floor identification signs and exit signs, clearly communicate to pedestrians where the nearest exit is. Luminous egress path marking systems use directional signage to ensure occupants know the path of egress, especially after the power has failed.

Luminous egress path markings play a vital role in a safe and efficient egress. The photoluminescent light emitted from these products provides a brightly lit egress path, without relying on electricity. Provide occupants with an easy to follow egress path, and meet code compliance, with luminous egress path markings!

Ecoglo® is the number one choice for photoluminescent egress products in the United States! Our extensive range of products ensures you can easily find everything you need to create a visibly better egress path in your facility. All our products exceed building code compliance and are safe for the environment.

Learn more about our luminous egress products, and get a free building audit from one of our safety experts today.

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