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Ask Machinc Your Own Question
Machinc, General Contractor
Category: Home Improvement
Satisfied Customers: 911
Experience:  Has written home improvement articles since 2008. Earned South Carolina Residential Builders License in 1991.
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We have a commercial building being used spaces 80 people.

Customer Question

We have a commercial building being used for office spaces for about 80 people.
All of the doors ( interior and exterior ) are controlled by an electronic access system which uses ceiling mounted motion units to unlock doors. There are small back up buttons
( push to open type ) that are at each door in case the system fails. Some of the buttons are about 2" x 2" and have the labeling printed on them which says " push to exit" while others are about 1" x 1" and say " exit " . My question is if there is a minimum size required for labeling indicating that these are exit buttons. In other words, do we need to post separate signage next to each of these buttons to aid people to see them in case of emergency per Fire code requirements?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Home Improvement
Expert:  Machinc replied 1 year ago.

It is fine to have electronic exit buttons but all doors that lock automatically must be equiped with panic bars that operate without electricity. An electronic exit button cannot be used or depended on as a means of an emergency exit. This applies to interior and exterior doors and all doors as well as rooms with multible doors .

Expert:  Machinc replied 1 year ago.

Sinage at a button may not be seen in an energency situation. Exterior doors are required to have a back up energency lighted exit sign that is visible from any interior areas and also exit signs placed at intermediate means of egress showing a route out of the building to areas where the exterior door is not visible.

Expert:  Machinc replied 1 year ago.

The size of the sinage you are asking about should be easily seen for optional use but it can not be used as an emergency system.

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