Establishments to adopt international luminescent markings after NCCC fire

BUSINESSES in the city will soon follow the standards of Canada and New York’s building codes in terms of installing photo-luminescent markings on hallways and fire exits following the deadly NCCC mall fire.

Councilor Mabel Sunga Acosta, committee on peace and public safety chairperson, said that during their public hearing, the stakeholders proposed following the Canada Building Code and New York Building Code aside from the International Building Code with reference to the Fire Code of the Philippines.

The International Building Code (IBC) (primarily new construction and renovations) and the International Fire Code (IFC) 2009, 2012 and 2015 Editions (primarily existing occupancies) address requirements for Luminous Egress Path Markings.

Non-electrical Luminous Egress Path Markings include signs and markings using photo-luminescent (glow in the dark) and self-luminous technologies.

According to Acosta, the requirements for the means of egress shall be illuminated at all times and the photo-luminescent marking should be placed 1 foot above the ground.

The city councilor also stressed that those marking are not electrically powered. Survivors of the NCCC Mall fire claimed that in just a few seconds after the electricity went out, dark smoke from the fire caused disorientation and they forgot the way to the nearest exits.

The proposed ordinance requiring establishments to install photo-luminescent or glow-in-the-dark markings leading to stairwells, pathways, and all available emergency exits was passed on the first reading on Jan. 9 and still at the committee level.

Acosta filed the proposed measure in response to the Dec. 23 fire incident at NCCC that left 38 individuals dead.

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