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Evacuation Plans and Procedures eTool - Copyright WARNING: Not all materials on this Web site were created by the federal government. Some content — including both images and text — may be the copyrighted property of others and used by the DOL under a license. Such content generally is accompanied by a copyright notice. It is your responsibility to obtain any necessary permission from the owner's of such material prior to making use of it. You may contact the DOL for details on specific content, but we cannot guarantee the copyright status of such items. Please consult the U.S.Copyright Office at the Library of Congress — http://www.copyright.gov — to search for copyrighted materials.Evacuation Plans and Procedures eTool - Copyright WARNING: Not all materials on this Web site were created by the federal government. Some content — including both images and text — may be the copyrighted property of others and used by the DOL under a license. Such content generally is accompanied by a copyright notice. It is your responsibility to obtain any necessary permission from the owner's of such material prior to making use of it. You may contact the DOL for details on specific content, but we cannot guarantee the copyright status of such items. Please consult the U.S.Copyright Office at the Library of Congress — http://www.copyright.gov — to search for copyrighted materials.Evacuation Plans and Procedures eTool - Copyright WARNING: Not all materials on this Web site were created by the federal government. Some content — including both images and text — may be the copyrighted property of others and used by the DOL under a license. Such content generally is accompanied by a copyright notice. It is your responsibility to obtain any necessary permission from the owner's of such material prior to making use of it. You may contact the DOL for details on specific content, but we cannot guarantee the copyright status of such items. Please consult the U.S.Copyright Office at the Library of Congress — http://www.copyright.gov — to search for copyrighted materials.Evacuation Plans and Procedures eTool - Copyright WARNING: Not all materials on this Web site were created by the federal government. Some content — including both images and text — may be the copyrighted property of others and used by the DOL under a license. Such content generally is accompanied by a copyright notice. It is your responsibility to obtain any necessary permission from the owner's of such material prior to making use of it. You may contact the DOL for details on specific content, but we cannot guarantee the copyright status of such items. Please consult the U.S.Copyright Office at the Library of Congress — http://www.copyright.gov — to search for copyrighted materials.Evacuation Plans and Procedures eTool - Copyright WARNING: Not all materials on this Web site were created by the federal government. Some content — including both images and text — may be the copyrighted property of others and used by the DOL under a license. Such content generally is accompanied by a copyright notice. It is your responsibility to obtain any necessary permission from the owner's of such material prior to making use of it. You may contact the DOL for details on specific content, but we cannot guarantee the copyright status of such items. Please consult the U.S.Copyright Office at the Library of Congress — http://www.copyright.gov — to search for copyrighted materials.Evacuation Plans and Procedures eTool - Copyright WARNING: Not all materials on this Web site were created by the federal government. Some content — including both images and text — may be the copyrighted property of others and used by the DOL under a license. Such content generally is accompanied by a copyright notice. It is your responsibility to obtain any necessary permission from the owner's of such material prior to making use of it. You may contact the DOL for details on specific content, but we cannot guarantee the copyright status of such items. Please consult the U.S.Copyright Office at the Library of Congress — http://www.copyright.gov — to search for copyrighted materials.
Employer Responsibilities  

People in meeting - Copyright WARNING: Not all materials on this Web site were created by the federal government. Some content — including both images and text — may be the copyrighted property of others and used by the DOL under a license. Such content generally is accompanied by a copyright notice. It is your responsibility to obtain any necessary permission from the owner's of such material prior to making use of it. You may contact the DOL for details on specific content, but we cannot guarantee the copyright status of such items. Please consult the U.S.Copyright Office at the Library of Congress — http://www.copyright.gov — to search for copyrighted materials. When there is an emergency, getting workers out of high-rise buildings poses special challenges. Preparing in advance to safely evacuate the building is critical to the safety of employees who work there.

What actions should employers take to help ensure safe evacuations of high-rise buildings?
  • Don't lock fire exits or block doorways, halls, or stairways.
  • Test regularly all back-up systems and safety systems, such as emergency lighting and communication systems , and repair them as needed.
  • Develop a workplace evacuation plan, post it prominently on each floor, and review it periodically to ensure its effectiveness.
  • Identify and train floor wardens, including back-up personnel, who will be responsible for sounding alarms and helping to evacuate employees.
  • Conduct emergency evacuation drills periodically.
  • Establish designated meeting locations outside the building for workers to gather following an evacuation. The locations should be safe distance from the building and in an area where people can assemble safely without interfering with emergency response teams.
  • Identify personnel with special needs or disabilities who may need help evacuating and assign one or more people, including back-up personnel, to help them.
  • Ensure that during off-hour periods, systems are in place to notify, evacuate, and account for off-hour building occupants.
  • Post emergency numbers near telephones.


What should employers do when an emergency occurs?
  • Sound appropriate alarms and instruct employees to leave the building.
  • Notify, police, firefighters, or other appropriate emergency personnel.
  • Take a head count of employees at designated meeting locations, and notify emergency personnel of any missing workers


Disclaimer:

Because every high-rise building has unique characteristics involving location, design, construction, and occupancy, this page covers only some of the basic considerations for safe evacuation. This information is not a substitute for a site-specific evacuation program nor does it detail specific OSHA or OSHA-approved state plan standards that may be applicable to individual work sites. Likewise, it does not create independent legal obligations. In addition, OSHA citations can only issued for violations of the OSH Act, OSHA standards, or OSHA regulations.
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