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California Building Code Excerpt

Section 1009 Accessible Means of Egress

Code excerpt regarding accessible means of egress.

Section 1009 Accessible Means of Egress

1009.1 Accessible means of egress required. Accessible means of egress shall comply with this section. Accessible spaces shall be provided with not less than one accessible means of egress. Where more than one means of egress are required by Section 1006.2 or 1006.3 from any accessible space, each accessible portion of the space shall be served by accessible means of egress in at least the same number as required by Section 1006.2 or 1006.3. In addition to the requirements of this chapter, means of egress, which provide access to, or egress from, buildings for persons with disabilities, shall also comply with the requirements of Chapter 11A or 11B as applicable.

Exceptions:

  1. Accessible means of egress are not required to be provided in existing buildings.
  2. One accessible means of egress is required from an accessible mezzanine level in accordance with Section 1009.3, 1009.4 or 1009.5 and Chapter 11A or 11B, as applicable.
  3. In assembly areas with ramped aisles or stepped aisles, one accessible means of egress is permitted where the common path of egress travel is accessible and meets the requirements in Section 1029.8, and Chapter 11A or 11B, as applicable.

1009.2 Continuity and components. Each required accessible means of egress shall be continuous to a public way and shall consist of one or more of the following components:

  1. Accessible routes complying with Chapter 11A, Section 1110A.1 and 1120A, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-206 and 11B-402, as applicable.
  2. Interior exit stairways complying with Sections 1009.3 and 1023, Chapter 11A, Section 1123A, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-210 and 11B-504, as applicable.
  3. Exit access stairways complying with Sections 1009.3 and 1019.3 or 1019.4, Chapter 11A, Section 1123A, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-210 and 11B-504, as applicable.
  4. Exterior exit stairways complying with Sections 1009.3 and 1027 and Chapter 11A, Section 1115A, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-210 and 11B-504, as applicable and serving levels other than the level of exit discharge.
  5. Elevators complying with Section 1009.4, and Chapter 11A, Section 1124A, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-206.6 and 11B-407, as applicable.
  6. Platform lifts complying with Section 1009.5 and Chapter 11A, Section 1124A, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-206.7, 11B-207.2 and 11B-410, as applicable.
  7. Horizontal exits complying with Section 1026.
  8. Ramps complying with Section 1012, and Chapter 11A, Sections 1114A and 1122A, or Chapter 11B, Section 11B-405, as applicable.
  9. Areas of refuge complying with Section 1009.6.
  10. Exterior areas for assisted rescue complying with Section 1009.7 serving exits at the level of exit discharge.

1009.2.1 Elevators required. In buildings where a required accessible floor is four or more stories above or below a level of exit discharge, not less than one required accessible means of egress shall be an elevator complying with Section 1009.4

Exceptions:

  1. In buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2, the elevator shall not be required on floors provided with a horizontal exit and located at or above the levels of exit discharge.
  2. In buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2, the elevator shall not be required on floors provided with a ramp conforming to the provisions of Section 1012.

1009.3 Stairways. In order to be considered part of an accessible means of egress, a stairway between stories shall have a clear width of 48 inches (1219 mm) minimum between handrails and shall either incorporate an area of refuge within an enlarged floor-level landing or shall be accessed from an area of refuge complying with Section 1009.6. Exit access stairways that connect levels in the same story are not permitted as part an accessible means of egress. [DSA-AC & HCD 1-AC] In addition, exit stairways shall comply with Chapter 11A, Section 1115A and 1123A, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-210 and 11B-504, as applicable.

Exceptions:

  1. Exit access stairways providing means of egress from mezzanines are permitted as part of an accessible means of egress.
  2. The clear width of 48 inches (1219 mm) between handrails is not required in buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2.
  3. The clear width of 48 inches (1219 mm) between handrails is not required for stairways accessed from a refuge area in conjunction with a horizontal exit.
  4. Areas of refuge are not required at exit access stairways where two-way communication is provided at the elevator landing in accordance with Section 1009.8.
  5. Areas of refuge are not required at stairways in buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2.
  6. Areas of refuge are not required at stairways serving open parking garages.
  7. Areas of refuge are not required for smoke-protected assembly seating areas complying with Section 1029.6.2.
  8. Areas of refuge are not required at stairways in Group R-2 occupancies.
  9. Areas of refuge are not required for stairways accessed from a refuge area in conjunction with a horizontal exit.

1009.4 Elevators. In order to be considered part of an accessible means of egress, an elevator shall comply with the emergency operation and signaling device requirements of California Code of Regulations, Title 8, Division 1, Chapter 4, Subchapter 6, Elevator Safety Orders. Standby power shall be provided in accordance with Chapter 27 and Section 3003. The elevator shall be accessed from an area of refuge complying with Section 1009.6.

Exceptions:

  1. Areas of refuge are not required at the elevator in open parking garages.
  2. Areas of refuge are not required in buildings and facilities equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2.
  3. Areas of refuge are not required at elevators not required to be located in a shaft in accordance with Section 712.
  4. Areas of refuge are not required at elevators serving smoke-protected assembly seating areas complying with Section 1029.6.2.
  5. Areas of refuge are not required for elevators accessed from a refuge area in conjunction with a horizontal exit.

1009.5 Platform lifts. Platform lifts shall be permitted to serve as part of an accessible means of egress where allowed as part of a required accessible route in Chapter 11A, Sections 1121A and 1124A.11, or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-206.7.1 through 11B-206.7.10, as applicable. Standby power for the platform lift shall be provided in accordance with Chapter 27.

[DSA-AC] See Chapter 11B, Section 11B-207.2 for additional accessible means of egress requirements at platform lifts.

1009.6 Areas of refuge. Every required area of refuge shall be accessible from the space it serves by an accessible means of egress.

[DSA-AC] Areas of refuge shall comply with the requirements of this code and shall adjoin an accessible route complying with Sections 11B-206 and 11B-402.

1009.6.1 Travel distance. The maximum travel distance from any accessible space to an area of refuge shall not exceed the exit access travel distance permitted for the occupancy in accordance with Section 1017.1.

1009.6.2 Stairway or elevator access. Every required area of refuge shall have direct access to a stairway complying with Sections 1009.3 and 1023 or an elevator complying with Section 1009.4.

1009.6.3 Size. Each area of refuge shall be sized to accommodate two wheelchair spaces that are not less than 30 inches by 48 inches (762 mm by 1219 mm). The total number of such 30-inch by 48-inch (762 mm by 1219 mm) spaces per story shall be not less than one for every 200 persons of calculated occupant load served by the area of refuge. Such wheelchair spaces shall not reduce the means of egress minimum width or required capacity. Access to any of the required wheelchair spaces in an area of refuge shall not be obstructed by more than one adjoining wheelchair space.

Exception: The enforcing agency may reduce the size of each required area of refuge to accommodate one wheelchair space that is not less than 30 inches by 48 inches (762 mm by 1219 mm) on floors where the occupant load is less than 200.

1009.6.4 Separation. Each area of refuge shall be separated from the remainder of the story by a smoke barrier complying with Section 709 or a horizontal exit complying with Section 1026. Each area of refuge shall be designed to minimize the intrusion of smoke.

Exceptions:

  1. Areas of refuge located within an enclosure for interior exit stairways complying with Section 1023.
  2. Areas of refuge in outdoor facilities where exit access is essentially open to the outside.

1009.6.5 Two-way communication. Areas of refuge shall be provided with a two-way communication system complying with Sections 1009.8.1 and 1009.8.2.

1009.7 Exterior areas for assisted rescue. Exterior areas for assisted rescue shall be accessed by an accessible route from the area served.

Where the exit discharge does not include an accessible route from an exit located on the level of exit discharge to a public way, an exterior area of assisted rescue shall be provided on the exterior landing in accordance with Sections 1009.7.1 through 1009.7.4.

1009.7.1 Size. Each exterior area for assisted rescue shall be sized to accommodate wheelchair spaces in accordance with Section 1009.6.3.

1009.7.2 Separation. Exterior walls separating the exterior area of assisted rescue from the interior of the building shall have a minimum fire-resistance rating of 1 hour, rated for exposure to fire from the inside. The fire-resistance-rated exterior wall construction shall extend horizontally 10 feet (3048 mm) beyond the landing on either side of the landing or equivalent fire-resistance-rated construction is permitted to extend out perpendicular to the exterior wall 4 feet (1220 mm) minimum on the side of the landing. The fire-resistance-rated construction shall extend vertically from the ground to a point 10 feet (3048 mm) above the floor level of the area for assisted rescue or to the roof line, whichever is lower. Openings within such fire-resistance-rated exterior walls shall be protected in accordance with Section 716

1009.7.3 Openness. The exterior area for assisted rescue shall be open to the outside air. The sides other than the separation walls shall be not less than 50 percent open, and the open area shall be distributed so as to minimize the accumulation of smoke or toxic gases.

1009.7.4 Stairways. Stairways that are part of the means of egress for the exterior area for assisted rescue shall provide a clear width of 48 inches (1220 mm) between handrails.

Exception: The clear width of 48 inches (1220 mm) between handrails is not required at stairways serving buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2.

1009.8 Two-way communication. A two-way communication system complying with Sections 1009.8.1 and 1009.8.2 shall be provided at the landing serving each elevator or bank of elevators on each accessible floor that is one or more stories above or below the level of exit discharge.

  1. Two-way communication systems are not required at the landing serving each elevator or bank of elevators where the two-way communication system is provided within areas of refuge in accordance with Section 1009.6.5
  2. Two-way communication systems are not required on floors provided with ramps conforming to the provisions of Section 1012.
  3. Two-way communication systems are not required at the landings serving only service elevators that are not designated as part of the accessible means of egress or serve as part of the required accessible route into a facility.
  4. Two-way communication systems are not required at the landings serving only freight elevators.
  5. Two-way communication systems are not required at the landing serving a private residence elevator.

1009.8.1 System requirements. Two-way communication systems shall provide communication between each required location and a central control point location approved by the fire department. Where the central control point is not a constantly attended location, a two-way communication system shall have a timed automatic telephone dial-out capability to a monitoring location. The two-way communication system shall include both audible and visible signals.

1009.8.1.1 Visible communication method. [DSA-AC and HCD 1-AC] A button complying with Section 1138A.4 or Sections 11B-205 and 11B-309 in the area of refuge shall activate both a light in the area of refuge indicating that rescue has been requested and a light at the central control point indicating that rescue is being requested. A button at the central control point shall activate both a light at the central control point and a light in the area of refuge indicating that the request has been received.

1009.8.2 Directions. Directions for the use of the two-way communication system, instructions for summoning assistance via the two-way communication system and written identification of the location shall be posted adjacent to the two-way communication system. Signage shall comply with Chapter 11A, Section 1143A or Section 11B-703.5 requirements for visual characters.

1009.9 Signage. Signage indicating special accessibility provisions shall be provided as shown:

  1. Each door providing access to an area of refuge from an adjacent floor area shall be identified by a sign stating: AREA OF REFUGE.
  2. Each door providing access to an exterior area for assisted rescue shall be identified by a sign stating: EXTERIOR AREA FOR ASSISTED RESCUE.

Signage shall comply with Chapter 11A, Section 1143A and Chapter 11B, Section 11B-703.5 as applicable, requirements for visual characters and include the International Symbol of Accessibility. Where exit sign illumination is required by Section 1013.3, the signs shall be illuminated. Additionally, visual characters, raised character and Braille signage complying with Chapter 11A, Section 1143A or Chapter 11B, Sections 11B-703.1, 11B-703.2, 11B-703.3 and 11B-703.5 shall be located at each door to an area of refuge and exterior area for assisted rescue in accordance with Section 1013.4. The International Symbol of Accessibility shall comply with Chapter 11A, Section 1143A or Chapter 11B, Section 11B-703.7.2.1.

1009.10 Directional signage. Directional signage complying with Chapter 11B, Section 11B-703.5 indicating the location of all other means of egress and which of those are accessible means of egress shall be provided at the following:

  1. At exits serving a required accessible space but not providing an approved accessible means of egress.
  2. At elevator landings.
  3. Within areas of refuge.

1009.11 Instructions. In areas of refuge and exterior areas for assisted rescue, instructions on the use of the area under emergency conditions shall be posted. Signage shall comply with Chapter 11A, Section 1143A or Chapter 11B, Section 11B-703.5 requirements for visual characters. The instructions shall include all of the following:

  1. Persons able to use the exit stairway do so as soon as possible, unless they are assisting others.
  2. Information on planned availability of assistance in the use of stairs or supervised operation of elevators and how to summon such assistance.
  3. Directions for use of the two-way communications system where provided.

1009.12 Alarms/emergency warning systems/accessibility. If emergency warning systems are required, they shall activate a means of warning the hearing impaired. Emergency warning systems as part of the fire-alarm system shall be designed and installed in accordance with NFPA 72 as amended in Chapter 35.