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Exit Choice Behaviour During The Evacuation Of Two Lecture Theatres

Kimura, M. and Sime, J.D., 1989. Exit Choice Behaviour During The Evacuation Of Two Lecture Theatres. Fire Safety Science 2: 541-550. doi:10.3801/IAFSS.FSS.2-541


The pattern of movement to exits in two lecture theatres during a monitored evacuation is examined. The research study focuses on exit I choice behavior: the distance, direction and time taken to leave a setting in which there is an entrance and emergency fire exit. The front (F) lecture theatre studied has both of its exits at the back. In contrast, a nearby ( R ) lecture theatre, has the same design except that the entrance is in one corner at the back and fire exit towards the front. In the F theatre, 55% of the 56 people left via the main entrance, 45% via the fire exit. 88% of the individuals monitored left within 2.5 minutes. The pattern of movement, distance covered, exit used and time to leave by the different exits in the F theatre, were statistically analyzed in relation to initial seat position. Under instructions from the lecturer everyone in the R theatre left by the fire exit. 70% of the total of 77 people left within 2.5 minutes. The exit choice behavior is discussed in relation to the 2.5 minutes safety margin, the lecture theatre layout, different exit locations, verbal instruction from the lecturers and normal entry to and egress from the theatres.


Egress: people movement, Egress: theaters, Egress: time

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