Types of Emergency Lighting

Types of Emergency Lighting

RES can provide a wide range of Emergency Lights for your business premises. Emergency escape lighting is defined as “that part of emergency lighting that is provided to enable safe exit in the event of failure of the normal supply”.

As well as highlighting fire exits, emergency lighting provides essential illumination throughout escape routes including steps, stairways, changes in direction and fire and first aid points.

The design and placement of Emergency Lighting is subject to BS EN 1838:2013 which specifies escape and standby lighting requirements for businesses in the event of a power failure.

What is maintained and non-maintained emergency lighting?

A maintained emergency light is always on and will stay illuminated in the event of a power failure. These lights are usually installed in communal areas such as corridors and stair wells.

A non-maintained emergency light only comes on in the event of a power failure. These lights will usually be installed in areas that don’t need a permanent light source.

Typical Products Used

LED Bulkhead Emergency Light

Designed to provide emergency lighting and illuminate escape routes during a power cut

  • – LED Light Source
  • – 3 Hour Emergency Duration
  • – Suitable for ceiling and wall mounting
  • – Maintained or Non-Maintained

Wall/Ceiling Mounted LED Emergency Exit Sign

Designed for ceiling/wall mounting along corridors that form part of the escape route

  • – LED Light Source or 8-Watt Fluorescent Tube
  • – 3 Hour Emergency Duration
  • – Suitable for ceiling and wall mounting
  • – Maintained or Non-Maintained

Round Bulkhead Light

Designed to provide emergency lighting and illuminate escape routes during a power cut

  • – LED Light Source
  • – 3 Hour Emergency Duration
  • – Suitable for ceiling and wall mounting
  • – Maintained or Non-Maintained

LED Twin Spot Emergency Light

Designed for large or high areas such as escape routes, sports stadiums, high bay warehouse, car workshops, racked areas and railway stations

  • – LED Light Source
  • – 3 Hour Emergency Duration
  • – Suitable for wall mounting
  • – Non-Maintained

Emergency Downlights

Emergency downlights are designed to be small and unobtrusive yet highly effective in the event of a loss of mains power.

  • – LED Light Source
  • – 3 Hour Emergency Duration
  • – Discreet ceiling mounting
  • – Maintained or non-maintained
Speak to RES about your Emergency Lighting requirements
    • – Emergency Lighting Installation & Commissioning
    • – Emergency Lighting Inspection and Testing
    • – Emergency Lighting Fault Finding and Repairs
    • – Emergency Lighting Regular Checks

The Importance of Regular Fire Safety Inspections and Maintenance – October 2021

It is vitally important to regularly inspect and maintain your buildings fire safety equipment. As a business owner, you are responsible for the safety of your building, employees and visitors. This includes the provision of adequate fire safety equipment and systems throughout the building. With more and more businesses returning to the office, it is essential to check that your fire safety equipment is regularly inspected.

Fire Extinguishers­

Fire Extinguishers need to be inspected and maintained by a competent person once a year in accordance with BS 5306. During these thorough checks your extinguisher is serviced and any necessary repairs are carried out or a replacement is recommended. A basic service would include checking it is in date, hasn’t been tampered with, is in good working order, is the correct weight and pressure and has the correct signage and positioning.

BS5306 recommends that fire extinguishers are tested by discharge every five years (water foam and powder) and refilled or replaced, and every ten years (CO2).  CO2 bottles are hydraulically tested at the ten year point, or the extinguisher is replaced.


It is also a requirement to keep a record of all servicing, maintenance and inspections of fire extinguishers.


Outside of the annual inspections, the responsible person for the premises should ensure that a visual inspection is carried out on all fire extinguishers monthly as follows;

    • – Check that the extinguishers are in the correct location
    • – Check that the anti-tamper seals are not missing
    • – Check the pressure gauge is in the green section
    • – Check for any damage to the extinguishers
    • – Confirm the operating instructions are legible
    • – Ensure the extinguishers not obstructed and are visible

RES extinguisher engineers are BAFE accredited (BAFE BS 5306 Part 3- Portable Extinguisher Maintenance).

Fire Alarms

British Standard: BS 5839 recommends any installed fire alarm system in your premises be maintained by a competent person at least twice a year. This includes detectors, call points and panels. A competent person is someone who has sufficient technical knowledge, understands the different types of fire alarms and how they work, is familiar with the makes and models, and has a good understanding of the legal requirements including the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRO/FSO) and the BS 5839.

Routine fire alarm maintenance checks should be carried out by a competent person and include the following:

    • – Control panels
    • – Devices (sensors and detectors)
    • – Call points
    • – Voice alarms
    • – Batteries
    • – Reporting (Log book entry is a requirement)

RES provide fire alarm regular checks, servicing and maintenance. RES fire alarm engineers are BAFE accredited to BAFE SP203 – Fire Detection and Alarm System Modular Scheme SP203 – Part 1.

Emergency Lighting

Emergency Lighting is covered by BS EN 50172 / BS 5266-8 which provides guidance on the minimum level of testing dependant on the type of site you operate. Your responsible person should oversee the appropriate schedule.

Testing is as follows:


Monthly – Test all emergency lighting systems and ensure all luminaries and signs illuminate and are clean and present. A quick flick test is adequate.


Annually – To check that the lights remain illuminated for their full rated duration.


For safety reasons, the standards advise that the emergency lighting testing should be carried out at times of least risk to the buildings occupants or if possible, when the premises are unoccupied or in unoccupied portions of those premises.


RES provide Emergency Lighting Inspection and Testing, Fault Finding, Repairs and Regular Checks

RES fire alarm engineers are BAFE accredited to BAFE SP203 – Fire Detection and Alarm System Modular Scheme SP203 – Part 1.

Passive Fire Protection – Fire Doors

It is good practice to regularly inspect that your fire doors function correctly and that it will perform to its designed standard. Fire doors where traffic is high are more likely to be damaged and should be checked once a week/month (dependent on usage) by the responsible person for the property.


Periodic checks should be carried out every six months. Article 17 of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRO/FSO) makes it a legal requirement to ensure that fire resisting doors and escape doors are correctly installed and adequately maintained in order for them to be fit for purpose.


RES passive engineers are FIRAS Certified for Fire Door Maintenance.

Passive Fire Protection – Fire Stopping

According to FIRAS, fire protection measures can be degraded over time and it is the legal responsibility of the Responsible Person that the fire protection be adequately maintained. It is the responsibility of the responsible person to ensure that regular inspection takes place. Fire stopping is the compartmentation of a building bounded by fire resisting elements such as walls, floors and ceilings. Fire resisting elements are used around cables, pipes and ventilation systems.


We recommend your fire stopping is inspected every six months.


RES passive engineers are FIRAS Certified for Penetration Sealing (Fire Stopping).

Smoke Control / Automatic Opening Vents (AOVs)

Smoke vents have moving parts such as struts, hinges, pistons and actuators which remain stationary for long periods of time. As a result these systems can be prone to failure or fault. These systems should be regularly checked and subject to two maintenance visits per year to ensure they operate correctly.


RES undertake the servicing and maintenance of Smoke Control / Automatic Opening Vents (AOVs).

Dry Risers

BS 9990 requires that Dry Riser systems to undergo an annual static pressure test and inspection and a six monthly visual inspection, by a competent person. This ensures that the Dry riser system is maintained and functioning correctly for the fire brigade at all times.


RES can undertake dry riser servicing, testing and maintenance.

Fire Hydrants

BS 9990 requires that private fire hydrants to undergo an annual test and inspection and a six monthly inspection by a competent person to ensure the hydrant remains ready and in a working condition for brigade use. The Responsible Person should make periodical inspections of all Hydrants on a weekly and or a monthly basis.


Contact RES for ALL your Servicing, Testing and Maintenance needs.

This article is for general guidance only, please get in touch if you need assistance

LED Emergency light

Having the correct lighting installed in a premise is very important to the health and safety of those using it particularly if it is a workplace. Correct LED emergency light installation makes it quicker and easier to identify hazards while making an environment easier and more comfortable for people to work in because of optimum light levels. Poor lighting can have a detrimental effect on employees’ and visitors’ health in an organisation’s premises, including:

  • Eyestrain
  • Migraine and headaches
  • Sick Building Syndrome
  • Epileptic fits/seizures

Having the correct LED emergency lighting is essential for any business and or premises owner, especially in cases where a sudden loss of light would prevent safe escape from a building in an emergency. At RES Fire Protection Engineers, we offer the following services for LED Emergency light solutions:

  • Installations
  • Regular inspection and testing
  • Repairs
  • Fault identification

LED Emergency lighting and the law

LED emergency light solutions are a UK legal requirement in all non-domestic and certain types of residential premises, as they ensure that a building is compliant with relevant British Standards and the law (Regulatory Reform Fire Safety Order 2006). This is something we can check for you at RES. We can also advise on and provide emergency LED lighting for your business, so that you can have a bespoke solution based on your business requirements. Regulations regarding LED emergency lighting are very specific, and you need to adhere to the following areas in order for premises to be compliant:

  • Illuminate escape routes adequately for ease of visibility
  • To provide sufficient illumination so that all users of a building can effectively access escape routes
  • To use lighting in an effective way so that all fire alarm call points, fire extinguishers and other safety equipment can be easily located
  • To provide sufficient lighting so that proper shut down procedures can be carried out in high risk locations 

LED emergency lighting needs to be activated for the entire period that a danger exists, or until normal lighting is restored for work to be undertaken as normal. If a normal lighting system fails in the event of a fire, a back-up power source is required for LED emergency lighting to fully function as necessary. This can be achieved by way of battery packs to each LED emergency light or by way of a centralised battery system To prevent glare, it is important to LED emergency lights should be mounted at least 2m from the floor so that effective light can illuminate all areas around a building and various escape routes.

Types of emergency lighting system

Maintained – LED emergency lights that operate as a normal light fitting and can be controlled with all the other lights in the area, however when the power fails the maintained emergency fitting will continue to operate but at a lower light level.

Non Maintained – Is normally switched off, with its batteries being continuously charged and a green LED showing fully charged. When the power fails then the fitting switches on using its battery supply. Non-maintained fittings are not part of the general lighting but are fittings such as emergency exit signs

LED Emergency Light solutions with RES

If you need LED emergency light solutions for your premises including installation, testing, maintenance or repairs, RES can carry out a comprehensive service to meet your requirements. We cover the South of England including London, Berkshire, Bracknell, Windsor, Middlesex & Surrey, Oxfordshire, Hampshire, Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire, Essex & Kent, West & East Sussex, Reading, Maidenhead, Slough, Newbury and the surrounding areas.

January 2019 – RES join Fire Protection Association

RES are now members of the The Fire Protection Association (FPA) which is the UK’s national fire safety organisation.

This further demonstrates our commitment  to working towards protecting people, property, business and the environment. Since the FPA’s formation in 1946 they have attained an unrivalled reputation for quality of work and expertise in all aspects of fire including research, consultancy, training, membership, publications, risk surveying and auditing. The FPA’s products and services are designed to assist fire, security and safety professionals achieve and maintain the very highest standards of fire safety management.