Property Owners And Property Management
1. ‘Above minimum requirements’- Good business sense – Caring and thoughtful- riskreduction and client appreciation
Tenants are obviously concerned about their working environment and safety included butalso about ecology and energy issues. The general population is receptive toarguments in these areas and are prepared to pay for some extras, especiallywhen it has been shown over and again that meeting minimum requirements carriesa non-negligible residual risk.
Theseadditional provisions in buildings can be called -‘above minimumrequirements‘. Property owners and management companies can buildcompetitive advantage and have higher average rentals and/or occupancy withrelatively small investments in these areas.
Thebasis for ‘above minimum requirements‘ and the ultimate demonstration ofcare and responsiveness come from a risk assessment approach to safety. Anyformal risk assessment carried out in a building today must take into accountthe recent history ? failure to do so is not only a lack of care but may, inthe event of an incident, be deemed negligent. The consequence to business ofnot addressing the risk of being careless or negligent is high. The opportunityof being SEEN to be actively caring and thoughtful is extremely positive.
Tenantswill have an added benefit of being in buildings that have ‘above minimumrequirements’ since it can be quantified and has proven to save lives.
2.How did we get here and what are they?
JALITE has specialised in photoluminescent systems now for over 25 years with theJALITE name in the forefront of this application since the first Trade Mark in Switzerlandin 1981. The first applications were Military and Civil Defence in themountains of Switzerland.
In the last 25 years there have been a string of disasters that have had detailedanalysis of ‘minimum requirements’ not meeting the needs. (see Appendix II) Allthe subsequent inquiries have lead to recommendations for improved directionalsigning and low location escape path marking systems.
Finally in New York the clear recommendation for a system that is independent of direct oremergency electrical power.
Photoluminescent Safety way-guidance systems are continuous escape path marking lines on floorswalls and handrails up to and including the Exit door and an unambiguous seriesof safety signs to give direction to the Exit.
The systems harvest energy given by the normal lighting that is required on theescape path which is then subsequently released over time as visible light incase of loss of lighting. JALITE brought the proof of their effectiveness incollaborative research with the National Research Canada already back in 1998 whichwas the basis for stairway provisions.
JALITE products are engineered specifically to charge quickly and well underrelatively low lighting although performance maybe significantly enhanced byadjustments to the installed lighting.
JALITE systems are all designed to be ‘above minimum’ requirement and can be tailoredto expected evacuation times or for greater conspicuousness.
JALITE systems have the highest credentials and accreditations of any systems on themarket with the most prestigious reference list of clients over its now very longhistory.
3 How to get the job done?
JALITE works exclusively through a trained and qualified distributor network toprovide essential logistic support and services.
Like any other safety system there is a need to choose the right product for therisk, install the product effectively and to maintain it. ‘Above minimum’ isassured by qualified expertise, JALITE as manufacturer and JALITE distributors’ expertise in securing client relationships and to deliver advice, installationand maintenance services.
JALITEand Chubb have formed this level of co-operation for many years in the UK and in Hong Kongnow for over 5 years.
New York background and supporting justification
As a direct result of the first terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre in1993, photoluminescent escape path marking was installed in the stairwells as aprovision against failure of the emergency lighting during an incident. Thissystem was responsible for many positive comments during the 9/11 attack andindeed some evacuees attribute their survival directly to the system.
Following the 9/11 attack on the twin towers, the New York City government passed LocalLaw 26 to force property owners to install photoluminescent safety way-guidancesystems in all tall commercial buildings. Here the ‘above minimum requirement’has become good business sense for New York City since there was a high risk that propertyvalues would plummet and workers would leave tall buildings. This was considered a major political and financial risk to the city.
JALITE systems are now installed in close to 200 of the largest and most prestigiousbuildings in New York.This represents about 10% of the total number of buildings affected by the law,however this is about 35% of the stairwell lengths. 90% of the buildings,mainly smaller and of single ownership or management chose to meet only minimumrequirements or risk not to meet them at all.
Justifications for ‘aboveminimum’
These are as follows from a risk assessment point of view:
Stairwellsare classified as unoccupied areas in a building and therefore unfamiliar tothe occupants- unfamiliar areas carry this extra risk for slower movement andegress.
Emergencylighting and electrical power are vulnerable and fail
Emergencylighting is not activated by fire or disaster but by power failure Manyoccupied spaces do not require emergency lighting and offer risks to occupants
Emergencylighting has a period of vulnerability after power failure due to charging ofbatteries
Generatorpowered emergency lighting has a lead time that can delay evacuation
Highmounted EXIT signs are not visible in smoke and can be destroyed by heat
Ceilingmounted Emergency lighting becomes smoked logged in smoke
Overdoor mounted EXIT signs do not generally give sufficient directionalinformation for efficient egress
Potentialfor overcrowding on stairwells and slow moving evacuees
The above residual risks and observations following disasters such as:
- Ships – Herald of Free Enterprise – Scandinavian Star
- OffshoreOil Platforms- Piper Alpha
- TrainStations – Kings Cross – Korea
- Aircraft – ManchesterAir Disaster
- Tunnels – Mont Blanc tunnel-others
- Trains – Paddington train disaster-others
- Buildings – World Trade Centre twice!
- Airports – Dusseldorf Fire
EntireTishman Speyer NYC portfolio: (a total of 21 Skyscrapers)
Rockefeller Center: Which includes the GE building,One Rock, and several other buildings.
Met Life building
The Lipstick Building
The Chrysler Building
The Hearst Building
1166 Avenue of the Americas
The Grace Building
One New York Plaza
The GM building
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