I don’t want to become too predictable, but now that the next code development cycle is ramping up, Thursday seems to be my day to ask for your thoughts with regard to potential proposals that would affect our industry.  When I ask you these questions, I’m not really advocating for one direction or another, so don’t hold back – tell me what you think!  Last week’s comments regarding electromagnetic locks on assembly occupancies were great, and there were also some helpful comments on the previous week’s post about stairwell reentry on mid-rise buildings.  I appreciate your insight, and more important, these proposals will have an impact on our industry in the future.  So here’s today’s question for all of you to ponder…

I’m sure you’ve seen panic hardware with some sort of guard or protection above, below, or around the panic.  Here are a few examples (feel free to send more and I will add them):

Gate with Panic

Auto Gate

Panic Hardware covered

Panic in Cage

UPDATE:  Here’s another type of protector, seen at an airport:

LAX Exit

Some of these applications may seem ok, and some not-so-good.  Should the codes define a certain area of free space around the panic hardware, ensuring that the actuating portion is obvious and readily available to someone using the exit?  How much clear space is needed?

What do you think?


Phoenix Fence

Dash Door

Eyal Bedrik, Entry Systems Ltd.


Jeff Tock, Allegion

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