Wayfinding Techniques For Emergency Evacuation
One of the most common problem with any map design, not just fire escape plans is the use of a single reading orientation for all maps in all locations. The orientation is typically ‘north-up’, which at least gives some orientation. However, the results are that when travelling south, the next exit on the left in reality is on the right.
Further complications arise when, in an attempt to make the escape plan more relevant to the user, copies of the buildings CAD floor plans are used. These often fail to be oriented to the basic ‘north-up’ level, compounding confusion and resulting in false information being presented to the reader.
The aim of any fire escape plan is to aid the safe egress from a building to an area of safe shelter. Correctly oriented, user-centred escape plans remove many of the barriers to effective way finding and aid successful evacuations.