Resource 3 - Emergency and Evacuation Floor Plan
You may wish to use this checklist when creating, reviewing or maintaining your service’s evacuation diagrams to ensure staff, children and visitors can easily evacuate your service premises in the event of an emergency. It is important to note that not all of the criteria on this checklist will be applicable to your building. If relevant, it may be appropriate to consult with your building manager while completing this checklist.
Why we need them
All children, staff and visitors of your service must be able to evacuate safely from its location if required. Evacuation diagrams support effective evacuation in an emergency and are commonly used as key tools in a building’s emergency management arrangements (per the Australian Standard AS3745:2010 planning for emergencies in facilities (AS3745)). While not legally binding, AS 3745 is widely accepted throughout the emergency planning industry as the benchmark when it comes to implementing emergency procedures and training within an organisation.
Regulation 97 of the Education and Care Services National Regulations, requires services to have emergency and evacuation floor plans (Regulation 97(1)(b)) that are displayed prominently near each exit (Regulation 97(4)).
The NSW Regulatory Authority considers that the AS3745 term 'evacuation diagram' means, for all intents and purposes, the same as the Regulation 97 term 'emergency and evacuation floor plan'.
Regulation 97 requires your service to have emergency and evacuation floor plans and that they 'are displayed in a prominent position near each exit'. AS3745 provides specific detail on content, validity and positioning.
Evacuation diagrams should be reviewed at least once every five years or when you have made a change to the layout of your service premises (e.g. through renovations or additions). Make sure to update the validity date on the diagram after you have finished your review, even if you have made no changes to the diagram.
Further information and guidance on Evacuation Diagrams can be found in Section 3.5 of AS3745. While the department does not require you to obtain a copy of AS3745 to assist your overall planning and preparedness, you may choose to obtain a copy as a business decision to validate the effectiveness of your location’s evacuation diagrams.
Evacuation diagram checklist
The following checklist is informed by Australian Standard AS3745:2010 Planning for emergencies in facilities. While this checklist can be used to assist you in installing and maintaining your emergency diagrams, you remain accountable for the efficacy of the evacuation diagrams present in your service.
Services should note that section 2 reflects the requirements of Regulation 97 that evacuation diagrams be placed at each exit of your service premises (i.e. the door/doors that is/are used to exit and enter your service premises)3. This additional requirement recognises the additional challenges educators face when evacuating very young children from a service.
Disclaimer: This resource is for reference and should only be used as an aid to develop and supplement your education and care service’s Emergency and Evacuation Procedures. It is the Approved Provider’s responsibility to ensure that correctly labelled and accurate floor plans and procedures are displayed in a prominent position near each exit of your education and care service premises.