Emergency lighting is the lighting used for an emergency situation when the main power supply is cut and any normal illumination fails. The loss of mains electricity could be the result of a fire or power cut and the normal lighting supply fails …
Emergency Lighting Regulations And Testing
This may lead to sudden darkness and a possible danger to the occupants, either through physical danger or panic. it is normally required to operate fully automatically and give illumination of a sufficiently high level to enable all occupants to evacuate the premises safely.
Most new buildings now have emergency lighting installed during construction in accordance with current building regulations and any local authority requirements. The British Standard provides the emergency lighting designer with clear guidelines to work to.
“BS 5266-1: 2011 embraces residential hotels, clubs, hospitals, nursing homes, schools and colleges, licensed premises, offices, museums, shops, multi-storey dwellings, etc.”
Emergency lighting is a general term and is subdivided into ’emergency escape lighting’ and ‘standby lighting’. It is part of the fire safety provision of a building and a requirement of The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.
Emergency lighting should illuminate paths to all exits of a building. In particular, they should give light to any building feature that would be difficult to navigate in the dark, such as stairs and ramps. In addition, there should be emergency lighting systems available outside the building to help people get to a safe distance away.
Just because emergency lights are required by law doesn’t mean they have to be ugly. They are available in a variety of styles to perform their function effectively without jarring the viewer.
In BS 5266-1:1999 the legislation clearly states the requirements of testing emergency lighting units. Maintaining your emergency lighting units ensures that all users have sufficient illumination in the event of an emergency to evacuate a building. The role of the ‘responsible person’ in a premises is to carry out periodic checks.
The period of simulated failure should be sufficient for the purpose of this test whilst minimising damage to the system components such as lamps. During this period, all luminaires and signs shall be checked to ensure that they are present, clean and functioning correctly. A record of the test must be recorded in the emergency lighting log book.
A test for the full rated duration of the emergency lights, usually three hours, must be carried out. The emergency lights must still be working at the end of this test. The result must be recorded and if failures are detected, these must be remedied as soon as possible.
Until next time …Are you testing your emergency lighting on schedule or are you having problems with the lighting itself and need expert advice? Call us on 0330 6600264 today and we can schedule a visit to test your emergency lighting and show you ways to stay compliant.Theatres, hospitals and offices are among the buildings required by law to have emergency exit lighting to help people get out in case of a power failure. Though such lighting is not a requirement for homes, a moderately handy homeowner can install such a system.