What is an Emergency Lights
An emergency light is a battery-backed lighting device that switches on automatically when a building experiences a power outage. Emergency lights are standard in new commercial and high occupancy residential buildings, such as college dormitories, apartments, and hotels. Most building codes require that they be installed in older buildings as well.
Incandescent light bulbs were originally used in emergency lights, before fluorescent lights and later light-emitting diodes (LEDs) superseded them in the 21st century.
Introduction to Emergency Lighting
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order (RRFSO) 2005, which came into force in October 2006, charges the responsible person in control of non-domestic premises and the common areas of a House in Multiple Occupancy (HMO) with the safety of everyone in the building, whether working, visiting or living there. This duty of care includes the provision of emergency lighting. Article 14 (2) (h) of the RRFSO states:
“Emergency routes and exits requiring illumination must be provided with emergency lighting of adequate intensity in the case of failure of their normal lighting”.
Emergency lighting is part of the fire safety provision of a building and cannot be ignored: as noted by the Industry Committee for Emergency Lighting (ICEL), which is the foremost UK authority on emergency lighting and provides third-party accreditation for components and products for emergency light fittings under the auspices of the Lighting Industry Association (LIA):
“The legal requirement is that non-domestic buildings must be safe at all times, even if a mains power failure occurs. Therefore, nearly all such buildings must have emergency lighting fitted”.