Why Emergency Exits Should Never Be Blocked: Lessons from Fire Incidents

Emergency exits are an essential part of building safety, providing a means of escape in the event of a fire or other emergency. However, emergency exits are often blocked by furniture, equipment, or other items, which can be dangerous in the event of an emergency. This article explores why emergency exits should never be blocked and highlights lessons from fire incidents around the world, including Malaysia.

The Importance of Unblocked Emergency Exits

Unblocked emergency exits are critical for ensuring the safety of building occupants in the event of a fire or other emergency. They provide a clear and direct path to safety and can help prevent injuries and fatalities.

When emergency exits are blocked, it can make it difficult or impossible for people to escape quickly and safely in the event of an emergency. Blocked exits can cause panic, confusion, and overcrowding, leading to injuries and fatalities. Additionally, blocked exits can make it difficult for firefighters and other emergency responders to access the building and extinguish the fire, further endangering the occupants.

Lessons from Fire Incidents

There have been many fire incidents around the world where blocked emergency exits have contributed to injuries and fatalities. Here are a few examples:

1. Grenfell Tower Fire, London, UK (2017): The Grenfell Tower fire resulted in 72 fatalities and was one of the deadliest fires in UK history. The emergency exits were blocked, and the building did not have sprinklers or other fire safety features.