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Are Your Tenants Safe?

Who will supervise evacuation?

In almost all cases, evacuation procedures will be supervised by a regulatory component, the building emergency team, or a combination of both. Where only one of these groups is involved, supervisory procedures will be fairly simple.

Situations where both regulatory components and the building emergency team will be involved will require the most analysis. Regulatory components should be able to determine what their roles would be for various types of emergencies. It is important to identify the capabilities and the limitations of each group so duplication of effort, conflicts and gaps in supervision will not occur.

 

How long will evacuation take?

An estimate of the amount of time needed for evacuation should be made. The time necessary will depend on a variety of factors:

The amount of time needed for evacuation may affect other portions of the evacuation phase. For example, if the amount of time needed for evacuation exceeds the time available prior to the situation reaching a critical phase, options could include improving detection or notification, or ordering evacuation earlier in the incident.

A closely supervised evacuation will move quicker than an "every person for himself or herself" approach. Evacuation in a high-rise building without close monitoring will take excessive amounts of time. Certain exits may become overcrowded, which will slow or stop egress, while other exits may be underutilized. Strategically placed members of the emergency team can guide occupants to the appropriate exits, control access into exit stairs to prevent overcrowding, and adapt the evacuation procedures if needed due to changing conditions resulting from the emergency.

The time required for evacuation will also depend on whether a complete or partial evacuation or relocation is ordered. Partial evacuation or relocation should only be considered when one or more of the following conditions apply:

How will evacuation routes be maintained?

The answers to this question should be found among the "building components" that were identified in the initial phase of the planning process. Any component that may serve to provide a safe and secure evacuation route should be included here. Some examples of building components that may affect evacuation routes include:

Certain human components may also influence the effectiveness of the evacuation routes. Emergency team members can ensure that exit routes do not become obstructed by too many people leaving too quickly.

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