Access Control Systems [NFPA 101-2000]
An employer who demonstrates compliance with the exit route provisions of NFPA 101-2000, the Life Safety Code, is considered to be in compliance with the corresponding requirements in 29 CFR 1910.34, 1910.36, and 1910.37. Many buildings use restrictive access devices that control both entrance and exit using electronic cards or similar devices.
The NFPA Life Safety Code provides specific information concerning the requirements for electronic devices that control access to an exit. The 2000 Life Safety Code “Access-Controlled Egress Doors” allows for the doors/turnstiles in question. However, these doors/turnstiles that are part of the means of egress must be equipped with an approved entrance and egress access control system.
One of the following must be provided:
- A sensor on the egress side, arranged to detect an occupant approaching doors that are arranged to unlock in the direction of egress upon detection of an approaching occupant or loss of power to the sensor
- Listed panic hardware or exit hardware that, when opened, unlocks the doors
- Loss of power to the part of the access control system that locks the doors shall automatically unlock the doors in the direction of egress.
- The doors must be arranged to unlock in the direction of egress from a manual release device located 40 to 48 inches vertically above the floor and within 60 inches of the secured doors. The manual release device must be readily accessible and clearly identified by a sign that reads, “Push to Exit.”
- When operated, the manual release device must result in direct interruption of power to the lock, independent of the access control system electronics, and the doors must remain unlocked for at least 30 seconds.
- Activation of the building fire-protective signaling system, if provided, must automatically unlock the doors in the direction of egress, and the doors must remain unlocked until the fire-protective signaling system has been manually reset.
- Activation of the building automatic sprinkler or fire detection system, if provided, must automatically unlock the doors in the direction of egress, and the doors must remain unlocked until the automatic sprinkler or fire detection system has been manually reset.
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