A wide variety of choices must be made anytime a new building is planned. There are design choices, budget choices, utility choices, and material choices. However, the most important decisions will be those relating to the safety of the people who will use the building. Federal and local building codes will determine what minimums need to be met in terms of bulk safety signs and egress systems, but ultimately, the builder must decide how best to adhere to safety codes while creating an environment that is both safe and on budget.
Exploring Bulk Safety Sign Options
In publicly funded buildings like county hospitals and public schools, hallways and stairwells must remain lighted at all times. This leaves builders with three standard options for safety signage: electric signs, tritium base signs, and glow-in-the-dark signs. Electric signs are still the standard for marking exits in public buildings, and such signs have the advantage of glowing brightly, even in lighted conditions. However, there are a number of drawbacks to electric signs, not the least of which is the cost.
Electric safety signs require a constant flow of energy, which can amount to over $3,500 per year for one hundred electric signs. Electric signs also require additional wiring and installation, which can add significantly to overall building costs.
Tritium based signs have the advantage of not requiring wiring and glowing without electricity. However, there are safety and environmental concerns with tritium emergency signs. The EPA warns that tritium could be carcinogenic, and tritium based materials tend to be improperly disposed of, making them very unsafe for the environment.
The third option is glow-in-the-dark safety signs, which utilize photoluminescent materials in order to glow when the lights suddenly go out. Like tritium based signs, glow-in-the-dark safety signs do not require wiring or complicated installation and do not need any electricity in order to work appropriately. Photoluminescent safety signs absorb energy from ambient light, allowing them to glow in the dark when the light source is suddenly removed. This makes photoluminescent signs more reliable than electric signs, which could fail if the electricity goes out.
If you’re in the midst of development planning for your building, it’s very important to weigh your egress and safety sign options early on. To learn more about the advantages of using photoluminescent systems, contact Jessup Manufacturing Company, maker of GloBrite®, today. A sales member from our team can address any questions that you may have and provide you with in-depth information.