In Locks

Emergency exits: complying with the rules and regulations

All public buildings, such as theaters, cinemas, shops, gyms and office buildings, must have emergency exits that are easy to access and use. It’s a matter of safety.

You’ll generally find two types of locks intended for use on emergency exits: crash bars and push pads.

Crash bars

Crash bars (also called panic bars) are frequently used in shopping centers, office buildings and other types of businesses. They’re installed on emergency exits (whether the door is made of wood, steel or another type of metal), as well as entrances and boiler room doors, to permit quick, easy evacuation in the event of an emergency. It’s also worth mentioning that crash bars can help minimize the risks of forced entry.

All crash bars must comply with BS EN 1125 standards.

What are the EN 1125 standards for crash bars?

These regulations apply to all establishments that are open to the public. Their purpose is to ensure the safety of the people who are present in these establishments, specifically by providing them with an efficient means of evacuation in the event of an emergency.

The buildings that are subject to these regulations include schools, hospitals, museums, performance spaces, bus and train stations, and airports.

EN 1125 standards establish a requirement for rigorous testing in order to ensure that a crash bar is easy to use and effective at all times.

Regulations related to crash bars include the following:

  • The exit must always be accessible from the inside and cannot be locked
  • The door must open outward in the direction it’s pushed
  • The device must easy to use (whether by children, seniors or people with reduced mobility)
  • The bar must cover at least 60 percent of the width of the door
  • The bar must be accessible in the dark or in the presence of smoke
  • The door may not exceed a maximum weight of 200 kg
  • The door may not exceed a maximum height of 2,500 mm and a maximum width of 1,300 mm

Push pads
Used in workplaces and multi-family residential buildings, push pads make it possible to evacuate the premises with a simple push of the door. Like crash bars, push pads must comply with standards regulating their quality and efficiency. The standard that applies to the manufacture and use of push pads is BS EN 179.

Accessibility and visibility
An emergency exit must always be free of any type of encumbrance. In other words, you should never place objects like boxes, furniture, shelves, clothing or shoes in front of the door, even temporarily.

Furthermore, an emergency exit must be easy to identify at all times. They are generally equipped with an illuminated panel that says EXIT or SORTIE. It’s crucial to inspect the lighting regularly and maintain it in proper working order.

Ensure your safety and peace of mind

Are you looking to increase the safety of the emergency exits at your establishment?

You can count on the experts at Serruriers Amherst for sound advice regarding the ideal system to meet your needs. You’ll be able to choose from a vast selection of products, including crash bars with or without alarms, electronic locks, intercoms, Mul-T-Lock security systems and much more!