Evacuation for Public Sector
Under the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA), public buildings, such as shops and shopping centres, libraries, sporting areas and restaurants must allow for access of disabled people and people with restricted mobility. They have the right to enter any building, regardless of its layout. Building mangers must allow for this, and it is their responsibility to provide access into the building - as well as a safe way out if an emergency occurs. Otherwise, there could be disastrous consequences.
If an evacuation occurs in a public building, it is important to ensure that everyone can be evacuated quickly and safely. If not, there is a risk of injury or death. So, building managers must ensure that the right emergency evacuation equipment is in place in multi-story buildings.
It is also important to note that public buildings are at the high-risk end of a fire risk assessment. Unlike in a school or care home where you can estimate the general age of the population, it is difficult to gauge average age and physique of individuals who will be visiting public buildings:
- Are they fit and able?
- Would they need assistance in an evacuation?
- Are they slow moving around the building
- Do they have restricted mobility issues?
As a building manager, if you cannot answer these questions about you visitors, it may be a good idea to carry out evacuation audits. Our emergency planning specialists can help you determine the type of evacuation equipment you’ll need as well as ensuring you are adequately covered, to ensure that everyone can be evacuated safely.
It's not just about having the right evacuation equipment...
Additionally relevant to ensuring the right type of evacuation product and number of products, is making sure that those operating the equipment are confident to evacuate people using the equipment if the need should arise - and as such, our Ensure Training team ensure that your staff know what they are doing.
As well as training, it's highly important to make sure that the equipment you have is working properly, as with a car or a boiler, it's vital to have regular servicing of your evacuation equipment, and Escape Mobility can support with this, with the ability to maintain and service our own products, as well as those produced by other manufacturers.
The above evacuation planning advice applies to public sector buildings in the following categories: libraries, stadiums & arenas, open air events, conference & exhibition halls, and restaurants.