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OSHA Employee Evacuation SystemMeeting OSHA's Environmental Health & Safety requirements can be daunting and expensive. However, if you need to implement an employee emergency evacuation system to comply with OSHA's standards, there are cost-effective solutions available. This guide will show you how to save thousands of dollars on your compliance efforts.

Understanding OSHA's Employee Evacuation System Requirements

The purpose of OSHA's Emergency Evacuation Systems standard (29 CFR 1910.165) is to provide early warning for emergency action, giving employees time to safely evacuate a building or area during emergencies.

Key OSHA Standards Requiring Emergency Evacuation Systems

Several OSHA standards mandate the implementation of emergency evacuation systems. Here are some key examples with links to more detailed information on OSHA's website:

Emergency Evacuation System

What is an Emergency Evacuation System?

According to OSHA, an employee alarm system is any equipment or device designed to inform employees of an emergency or signal a hazard requiring urgent attention. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 72, National Fire Alarm Code, specifies that a fire alarm signal must be distinctive and not used for any other purpose.

OSHA recommends using audible alarms such as bells, horns, sirens, voice announcement systems, or other devices that can be distinguished above the normal workplace noise level. The most effective means are voice signals or an interrupted steady sound (off-and-on sound).

Workplace Announcement Systems

OSHA defines a workplace announcement system as speakers used to play live or recorded voice messages. These systems are ideal for large workplaces where phased or guided evacuations are needed.

For more details, visit OSHA's Evacuation Procedures web page.

Affordable Solutions for Large Businesses

For businesses with large buildings or expansive grounds, installing a wired emergency evacuation system can be prohibitively expensive. However, a Wireless PA System offers a cost-effective alternative.

Components of a Wireless PA System

Wireless PA SystemA Wireless PA System typically consists of:

  1. A wireless receiver box connected to a horn PA speaker via a cable
  2. A wireless transmitting device, such as a two-way radio or base-station intercom

To make an announcement, set the transmitter to the same channel as the wireless PA and press the push-to-talk button. The system's range can extend up to a mile or more and can be further enhanced with external antennas.

If you already have a wired PA system, a Wireless PA System Interface device can receive radio transmissions and broadcast them over your existing system.

Additional Devices for Enhanced Safety

Several devices can integrate with the Wireless PA System to enhance safety:

  • wireless outdoor callboxCustomer Service Call Box: This can function as a panic button, sending recorded messages to two-way radios, base-station intercoms, or PA systems. You can record specific messages or sounds, ensuring you know where to direct help.
  • Wireless Call Boxes: These are essentially two-way radios in heavy-duty, water-resistant housings. When the button is pressed, the person can communicate with hand-held radios, base station intercoms, and the Wireless PA system. This setup is ideal for quickly notifying emergency response teams.

Prioritizing Employee Safety

Ensuring employee safety should be your top priority. Implementing a comprehensive employee alarm system using these devices will not only enhance safety but also save thousands of dollars compared to wired systems.

By adopting a Wireless PA System and its compatible devices, you can effectively meet OSHA's requirements while maintaining a budget-friendly approach.

Also see this page for all the components that make up this system: Voice Evacuation System

Voice Evacuation System

Benefits of IntercomsOnline