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Guidance on Fire Emergency Procedures for Emergency Stair Travel Devices



Erica D. Kuligowski


This document provides specific detailed guidance and recommendations on the use of emergency stair travel devices, or stair descent devices, for evacuation of persons with mobility impairments during fire emergencies in buildings. The people who would find this document useful are those who develop fire evacuation plans for building occupants (i.e., building owners, building managers, fire protection engineers, fire marshals, etc.), since they may be considering the use of stair descent devices for evacuation of people with mobility impairments in their buildings. There are seven main topics covered by this guidance document, and these are listed here: 1) The types of stair descent devices available on the market and the focus of this guidance document 2) Deciding whether stair descent devices offer appropriate evacuation solutions for your building 3) Selecting stair descent device number and type 4) Locating stair descent devices throughout the building 5) Operating stair descent devices during a fire emergency 6) Training on the use of stair descent devices 7) Device maintenance
Technical Note (NIST TN) - 1824
Report Number


Disabled, egress, evacuation, fire safety, human behavior, mobility impairments


Kuligowski, E. (2013), Guidance on Fire Emergency Procedures for Emergency Stair Travel Devices, Technical Note (NIST TN), National Institute of Standards and Technology, Gaithersburg, MD, [online], (Accessed June 23, 2024)


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Created November 26, 2013, Updated November 10, 2018