What is Emergency Lighting?

Emergency lighting refers to a light that automatically turns on when a building experiences a power outage.  It is an important feature in a wide variety of environments.

In the UK, it is the law to have emergency lighting fitted in occupied buildings. The lighting must be tested regularly  to ensure the safety of occupants. This law comes under Fire Precautions Regulations 1997. 

We are a Belfast electrical company. So, we understand electrics back to front, inside out, so we’re going to give a quick overview of what emergency lighting is and how it works.

 Imagine all the lights suddenly shutting off in your apartment block, university dorms or workplace. This could be from a power cut or a fire. Either way, most people’s immediate reaction might be panic. In the dark, it’s easy to stumble, fall and injure yourself. 

Where you’ll find them

Have you noticed that every escape route is lit by emergency lighting? Usually, you’ll find it above the door. What about stairwells? These can be dangerous in the event of an emergency so every stairwell is lit by at least two emergency lights. 

Most new buildings have emergency lighting installed during construction. The building will be designed in accordance with current Building Regulations and any local authority requirements.

Types of Lighting

There are lots of different types of emergency lights. However, usually you have a choice of two. Maintained lights are controlled in the same way as all other lights in the building. These lights will still work if the power fails, but at a lower lux level.

Non-maintained lights will be switched off usually, but they will remain fully charged at all times. The battery supply will turn on automatically if a power cut were to happen. If you’re unsure about how to install or maintain emergency lights, that’s what we’re here for. Email us at info@harconelectrical.co.uk to chat about it. 

Remember, it is imperative that emergency lighting is tested by a qualified engineer. It requires the simulation of a mains power failure on the regular lighting circuit. The results will be logged into a fire safety logbook.

Little things like the light above a door can seem unimportant. But in the event of an emergency, they can be make or break. That’s why it’s important for us as a Belfast electrical company, to think of every eventuality. We need to cover all bases and understand what emergency lighting is and how it works. 

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