Safe Evacuation for all - Fact or Fantasy? Past Experiences, current Understanding and future challenges

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Abstract

Statistics show that significant proportions of our global populations have a disability. Demographically we are an ageing and an increasingly obese society which, with increased accessibility, means that buildings are likely to be frequented by an ever increasing proportion of persons with reduced mobility. There is therefore a need to ensure that we can provide an accessible means of egress and a safe evacuation for all. Design guidance related to exit widths varies internationally but in the main has its origins in studies conducted with populations who were able bodied and fit. Furthermore the relationships between speed/density/flow used in hand calculations and computer models have been recognised as being outdated and not necessarily reflective of society today. This paper considers the evacuation of mixed ability populations in the context of increasing accessibility and changing demographics, reviews the basis for current design guidance and explores the design options for persons with reduced mobility. The current understanding of the evacuation capabilities of persons with reduced mobility is critically assessed and lessons from real evacuation experiences and other studies of mixed ability populations are drawn. In so doing, the sufficiency of current design guidance and challenges associated with implementing current approaches are considered and gaps in understanding and future research needs identified.
LanguageEnglish
Pages28-40
JournalFire Safety Journal
Volume91
Early online date10 May 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2017

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proportion
egress
disabilities
Aging of materials
Statistics
statistics

Keywords

  • disability
  • mobility impairment
  • evacuation
  • refuge
  • lifts/elevators
  • escape route design

Cite this

@article{1d457045438142c29ef40812549c7d43,
title = "Safe Evacuation for all - Fact or Fantasy? Past Experiences, current Understanding and future challenges",
abstract = "Statistics show that significant proportions of our global populations have a disability. Demographically we are an ageing and an increasingly obese society which, with increased accessibility, means that buildings are likely to be frequented by an ever increasing proportion of persons with reduced mobility. There is therefore a need to ensure that we can provide an accessible means of egress and a safe evacuation for all. Design guidance related to exit widths varies internationally but in the main has its origins in studies conducted with populations who were able bodied and fit. Furthermore the relationships between speed/density/flow used in hand calculations and computer models have been recognised as being outdated and not necessarily reflective of society today. This paper considers the evacuation of mixed ability populations in the context of increasing accessibility and changing demographics, reviews the basis for current design guidance and explores the design options for persons with reduced mobility. The current understanding of the evacuation capabilities of persons with reduced mobility is critically assessed and lessons from real evacuation experiences and other studies of mixed ability populations are drawn. In so doing, the sufficiency of current design guidance and challenges associated with implementing current approaches are considered and gaps in understanding and future research needs identified.",
keywords = "disability, mobility impairment, evacuation, refuge, lifts/elevators, escape route design",
author = "Karen Boyce",
note = "Reference text: [1] UN World Health Organization (WHO), World Report on Disability: Summary, 2011, WHO/NMH/VIP/11.01, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/50854a322.html [accessed 28 March 2017] [2] BS 4422: Part 6, The British Standard Glossary of Terms Associated with Fire, British Standards Institution, 1988. [3] Proulx, G., Pineau, J., Review of Evacuation Strategies for Occupants with Disabilities, IRC-IR-712, ational Research Council Canada, 2002. [4] BSI, PD 7974-6:2004, The Application of Fire Safety Engineering Principles to Fire Safety Design of Buildings. Human factors. Life Safety strategies. Occupant Evacuation, Behaviour and Condition (Sub-system 6), British Standards Institution, London, UK, 2004. [5] C/VM2 Verification Method: Framework for Fire Safety Design For New Zealand Building Code Clauses C1-C6 Protection from Fire, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, 2014. 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year = "2017",
month = "7",
doi = "10.1016/j.firesaf.2017.05.004",
language = "English",
volume = "91",
pages = "28--40",
journal = "Fire Safety Journal",
issn = "0379-7112",
publisher = "Elsevier",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Safe Evacuation for all - Fact or Fantasy? Past Experiences, current Understanding and future challenges

AU - Boyce, Karen

N1 - Reference text: [1] UN World Health Organization (WHO), World Report on Disability: Summary, 2011, WHO/NMH/VIP/11.01, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/50854a322.html [accessed 28 March 2017] [2] BS 4422: Part 6, The British Standard Glossary of Terms Associated with Fire, British Standards Institution, 1988. [3] Proulx, G., Pineau, J., Review of Evacuation Strategies for Occupants with Disabilities, IRC-IR-712, ational Research Council Canada, 2002. [4] BSI, PD 7974-6:2004, The Application of Fire Safety Engineering Principles to Fire Safety Design of Buildings. Human factors. Life Safety strategies. Occupant Evacuation, Behaviour and Condition (Sub-system 6), British Standards Institution, London, UK, 2004. [5] C/VM2 Verification Method: Framework for Fire Safety Design For New Zealand Building Code Clauses C1-C6 Protection from Fire, Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, 2014. 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PY - 2017/7

Y1 - 2017/7

N2 - Statistics show that significant proportions of our global populations have a disability. Demographically we are an ageing and an increasingly obese society which, with increased accessibility, means that buildings are likely to be frequented by an ever increasing proportion of persons with reduced mobility. There is therefore a need to ensure that we can provide an accessible means of egress and a safe evacuation for all. Design guidance related to exit widths varies internationally but in the main has its origins in studies conducted with populations who were able bodied and fit. Furthermore the relationships between speed/density/flow used in hand calculations and computer models have been recognised as being outdated and not necessarily reflective of society today. This paper considers the evacuation of mixed ability populations in the context of increasing accessibility and changing demographics, reviews the basis for current design guidance and explores the design options for persons with reduced mobility. The current understanding of the evacuation capabilities of persons with reduced mobility is critically assessed and lessons from real evacuation experiences and other studies of mixed ability populations are drawn. In so doing, the sufficiency of current design guidance and challenges associated with implementing current approaches are considered and gaps in understanding and future research needs identified.

AB - Statistics show that significant proportions of our global populations have a disability. Demographically we are an ageing and an increasingly obese society which, with increased accessibility, means that buildings are likely to be frequented by an ever increasing proportion of persons with reduced mobility. There is therefore a need to ensure that we can provide an accessible means of egress and a safe evacuation for all. Design guidance related to exit widths varies internationally but in the main has its origins in studies conducted with populations who were able bodied and fit. Furthermore the relationships between speed/density/flow used in hand calculations and computer models have been recognised as being outdated and not necessarily reflective of society today. This paper considers the evacuation of mixed ability populations in the context of increasing accessibility and changing demographics, reviews the basis for current design guidance and explores the design options for persons with reduced mobility. The current understanding of the evacuation capabilities of persons with reduced mobility is critically assessed and lessons from real evacuation experiences and other studies of mixed ability populations are drawn. In so doing, the sufficiency of current design guidance and challenges associated with implementing current approaches are considered and gaps in understanding and future research needs identified.

KW - disability

KW - mobility impairment

KW - evacuation

KW - refuge

KW - lifts/elevators

KW - escape route design

U2 - 10.1016/j.firesaf.2017.05.004

DO - 10.1016/j.firesaf.2017.05.004

M3 - Article

VL - 91

SP - 28

EP - 40

JO - Fire Safety Journal

T2 - Fire Safety Journal

JF - Fire Safety Journal

SN - 0379-7112

ER -