New office - new escape routes?

The din-Dietmar Nocker Sicherheitstechnik GmbH and Co. KG has more than 30-year experience in emergency and security lighting. When they moved into a new and innovative building in Aspern in Vienna, it was clear to the managing director, Christoph Nocker, that security was paramount for the company and its employees. Needless to say, the building is equipped with emergency signage and lighting. The escape signs can be controlled as required, and the staff can be quickly redirected if the escape routes are blocked.

accu:rate has analyzed different scenarios of the evacuation with partial obstruction of the escape routes compared to escape routes with guided evacuation paths.


Static vs. dynamic escape route signs

In the first scenario, the lighting showed the standard escape route. However, this one was blocked and the agents had to look for a new way after they realized they could not go any further. This is what happens every day in buildings, whose escape routes are displayed statically. If a part of the escape route is blocked and if the emergency lighting cannot be changed, the people cannot be immediately redirected. They follow the "normal" path and, in the worst case, they might move exactly in the direction of danger.

In the second scenario, the lighting was adapted to the situation and the employees knew from the time the alarm has started that they should take a certain way. The signs indicated exactly which way was free and should be chosen by the employees.
It was possible to determine a clear difference between both scenarios in the evacuation time, even though it is a simple office building with only 60 employees. The agents would have needed twice as long if they had to reorient by themselves and could not simply follow the emergency lights.




Course of evacuation


Image source: picture by Braden Hopkins via Unsplash.


Client: din-Dietmar Nocker Sicherheitstechnik GmbH & Co. KG 
Task: Evacuation simulation
Result: The evacuation was twice as long with a static emergency lighting.

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