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by Lee Wilson
The needs of people with disabilities must be a priority when considering the overall evacuation strategy of a building.
An ‘accessible means of egress’ is a relatively new term in Australia, though it is one that is widely accepted in many parts of the world and was adopted into the 2009 International Building Code (or ‘IBC’) published by the International Code Council. This term encompasses the parts of a building that make up the evacuation route for people with disability during an emergency evacuation.
A means of egress for all building occupants is defined in Section 10 of the IBC as a “continuous and unobstructed path of vertical and horizontal egress travel from any occupied portion of a building or structure to a public way.”
A means of egress consists of three distinct components:
In order to make an inclusive society a reality, it is necessary to identify and remove barriers to access.