Before entering any room, always look for a second way out, because under stress most people will always escape the way they entered.
But if you set in your mind that you will use an alternate exit if something goes off – you will be able to escape to safety a lot easier than the rest of the crowd.
Unfortunately, sometimes you don’t always see a or have a second exit.
Signs can get obstructed or simply broken (until next year’s inspection) or you might walk into a business that isn’t required to have a second exit.
You heard that correctly – not all public spaces are required to have a second exit.
You could be walking into a one way out room and NOT EVEN KNOW IT.
Luckily there’s a REAL EASY WAY to know if the store you’re walking into has one or more exits.
According to building codes, the door on occupancies with less than 50 will SWING IN and are NOT required to have a second exit, while the door on spaces with an occupancy of 50 or greater will SWING OUT and have a second exit.
Door SWING IN – one way out, Door SWING OUT – two ways out.
But that’s not all….
Without complicating this with fire codes, the general rule is for every 160 people of occupancy there should be an exit. So if you’re in a larger venue, mark your nearest exit and make sure it’s CLEAR.
Remember, occupants have a tendency to block exits with storage and equipment. Sure, they clear them for the inspection, but right after the fire marshal leaves, it’s business as usual.
Think of your local deli or market. They get a lot of deliveries every day and that means a lot of boxes. Most likely they stack the boxes by the back door exit and throw them out at the end of the day.
Imagine trying to get through that in a hurry. Now add 20 people behind you trying to escape an active shooter… your day went from shitty to extra shitty.
People are survive real life and death situations because:
They have a plan.
They take action.
They have a little luck (the better your plan, the more you practice the better your luck).
Finish the mission, come home safe and as always…