Jump to content

Escape doors and BS EN 13637

Recommended Posts

Note sure if this is the right part of the forum would appreciate some views.

My organisation is about to upgrade electronic access control systems to a newer model and the matter of BS EN 13637 compliance has arisen.

We have traditionally ensured BS EN 179 and BS EN 1125 are met and plan to continue deploying compliant mechanical escape systems such as break glass units, request to exit buttons, panic bars and fail safe mode on all internal doors in the event of a fire alarm activation. 

Our supplier is now trying to recommend we install electronic escape systems such as as ePED which can allow time delay on some of these doors. 

The conundrum is that these newer systems are very expensive in comparison to mechanical but my understanding is if we go with traditional break glass unit etc... BS EN 13637 would not apply, it's only there if you decide to implement these electronic escape systems as an option when configuring your escape routes or BS EN 13627 applies in all cases now.  

I'd appreciate any opinions from those who have tread this path before.  If you need more detail please let me know.










Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest Anthony

Hi Aitken, 

Break glass units and request to exit buttons are not mechanical escape systems as you've stated, and so cannot be compliant with BS EN 179 or BS EN 1125 as these standards cover mechanical egress via lever handle or push pad (EN179) / push bar or touch bar (EN1125). Just a note in case your supplier has been installing break glass units and telling you they're compliant to one of those standards. 

Electronic escape systems such as those covered by BS EN 13637, specifically the delay function, should only be considered if you have a very good reason to control emergency egress. You have to ask yourself why you would prevent someone from escaping and consider the additional controls (and therefore, points of failure) that are needed in the system. 

What would be understandable, is if your supplier has suggested replacing all your doors that have electronic locks and break glasses with an escape door system that complies with BS EN 13637, as the traditional break glass/maglock combo isn't a tested solution to any emergenecy escape standard that I know of. However, it does follow the guidance of Approved Document B and I have not come across a building control officer who has opposed that solution for emergency escape doors (yet). 

It may be best to talk to your local building control authority for guidance as this is a greatly misunderstood and misinterpeted (sometimes intentionally) subject. 

Kind regards, 


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

Yes our supplier has suggested that all escape doors get the electronic escape system.  Hence my query as required investment would be beyond financial capacity

Our main reason for consideration of BGU on ACS equipped escape doors is security and preventing public customers entering back of house secure areas.  Many of our sites are older and escape routes pass through these areas.  Normally, nowadays,  we would design out escape routes going through public to staff work areas.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You are posting as a guest. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...