The importance of emergency evacuation diagrams in your building

Building safety is an ongoing concern in Australia. Recent reports indicate that between 2017-2018, there were over 2600 incidents of structural fires in Queensland, alone. While just about every fire is an accident and unplanned, it’s hard not to argue that’s far too many.

Some measures have been put in place to help reduce this statistic. One such is the National Construction Code. This code dictates nationally consistent building regulations that set minimum standards for design and construction of new buildings being built in areas that are prone to bushfires.

Other measures that can help save lives in the event of a building fire are emergency evacuation diagrams. These are essential. Being able to evacuate a burning building quickly and efficiently is of utmost importance when it comes to saving lives.

The benefits of emergency evacuation diagrams
If you live in a house, it’s likely that you already know the fastest route for getting out and it could be out the front door! When it comes to larger buildings, however, the best route out might not be so clear. This is especially true for people who are visiting friends or family for the day in a larger building, or working there on contract. These individuals are likely not familiar with the building’s layout.

Without accurate signage and diagrams, these people could easily be stuck inside if a fire struck. Smoke can become thick rapidly, making it very difficult to see, exacerbating the issue.

In addition, even those people who are in larger buildings every day may not know where to find the stairs or the doors to get out.

When fire strikes a building or your home, you may have just minutes to get out. It’s not just the fierce flames that you have to contend with and fear but also the smoke. Smoke inhalation is said to be the most common cause of death in a building fire, with the substance travelling at up to ten metres per second.

Whether your building is a commercial structure, residential condominiums, or an apartment complex, communicating how to best evacuate in case of an emergency is vital.

What your evacuation diagrams need to include
Building regulations in Queensland require that you have emergency evacuation diagrams. These need to be accurate, kept up to date, and placed throughout your building. It’s the law. Anyone classified as a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) is legally required to ensure building safety and building compliance, including fire compliance.

Your evacuation diagrams need to do a few things. They need to clearly explain to your occupants how to leave the building in the event of an emergency. This needs to be available via:

  • Pictorial representations of floor areas
  • A clear orientation and a “you are here” label
  • Designated exits

Other necessary information that needs to be provided includes written directions on what to do in case of an emergency, and where firefighting equipment is located. Check out our website for a comprehensive description of these requirements.

How QBM can help
Statistics show that most fires occur when people are asleep at night. Once woken, it’s important everyone can get out. At QBM, we specialise in providing our clients with comprehensive building evacuation diagrams guaranteed to be compliant with current fire regulations in Queensland.

Our team of skilled and qualified professionals ensure your building can meet your legal obligations. When an emergency strikes, you want to know your occupants have the tools they need to get to safety in time. Time matters.

Contact us today to get a quote.