Considering Emergency Lights and their Purpose

Emergency Lights Show the Way

Emergency Lights are something most people with responsibility for a commercial building of any type are aware of and know have to be installed and maintained to keep compliant with legislation.

But why?

What is the purpose of such emergency lighting, and what is it supposed to do, exactly? How do they fit into a fire safety policy? Are they really necessary?

The primary purpose of emergency lights in a scheme is to provide illumination in an area or along an escape route when the local lighting fails for any reason – usually though, this is considered from the point of view that maybe fire or some other risk has caused the failure.

Emergency Lights Services | AFSS Ltd

Emergency Lights Scheme Design

The majority of emergency lights schemes will concentrate on “high risk” areas – these will be primary escape routes, rooms which have a risk of trapping people or have equipment which could cause harm.

Schemes should be designed in accordance with British Standard 5266:2011, which sets out a number of considerations, including the minimum level of light output, where the light must be directed, performance, and duration of the lighting power source.

Schemes can be designed in a number of ways, and can use different methods for powering the lights when needed. The majority today are self-contained, which means they will have a battery pack, or inverter which provides power, and which is charged up from the mains supply when not in use. 

Some types of light fitting can also be “converted” to allow them to operate both as normal lights, and as emergency lights too. The standard also covers areas such as how long the lights should be capable of operating for, and how they are tested.

Test points, normally operated by means of a special key, can allow easy testing of emergency lights without having to delve around in the mains consumer unit.

The lights themselves do not have to be the typical “bulkhead” type seen in almost every case, as more and more, LED lights are coming into their own, providing much more attractive lights, with better light output, longer lasting life, lower operating cost, and can serve much more easily as a dual purpose fitting. 

More and more, emergency lights are becoming integrated with intelligent control, which can offer functional self-testing, reporting, and control in ways that offer the whole building to be effectively lit, at much lower cost than ever before.

Emergency Lights Specialists

However integrated with normal lighting, the “emergency lights” aspect must still meet minimum requirements and rules – so it would make sense to employ a professional company such as AFSS Ltd who understand not just emergency lighting, but can also design and adapt entire lighting schemes to provide the desired results across the whole building, which can adapt to, and make use of natural light entering the area, as well as adjusting the light output of each individual unit.

Contact us about emergency lights today, by phone on 08453 884711 or 03330 884711 from a mobile, or use our easy contact page for more information or assistance.


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