Many years ago, right at the start of my career as an independent lighting designer, one of my first clients was Vaux Breweries, in Sunderland. Just the thing for a young lighting designer based in Chiswick. Working on the refurbishment of a pub with a huge dance hall to the rear, it was my first run-in with a fire officer; and I was getting increasingly frustrated with the amount of information that was being asked for. “Do we really need to go into this level of detail?” I said.
The reply has stayed with me to this day:
PEOPLE DIE IN PLACES LIKE THIS.
We talk about Emergency Lighting as a grudge purchase, as if its something that we’ll never need. And let’s face it – we hope DESPERATELY that we’ll never have to make use of it. But the risks and the threats never goes away; they may change, but they never go away.
My hope is that the lighting design community learns to embrace emergency lighting design and wrench it from the hands of contractors who often care less about the quality of the system and more about the margins that they can make out of it. Contentious? Unfair? I don’t think so.
But specifiers can’t hope to specify a good quality Emergency Lighting system without knowing what it means to get the details RIGHT.
Clevertronics is the biggest manufacturer of emergency lighting equipment in Australia and they are making inroads into the UK specification sector. I’ve been asked to take the role of interviewer in a webinar that will be broadcast on Wednesday 25th November at 9.30am (GMT).
I’m just a lighting designer. I need the help and support of the real experts if I’m to deliver an Emergency Lighting design that meets the needs of my client – and my client’s staff and their customers. We are moving towards a professional environment that will require improved competence from the design community. Webinars like this act as markers, helping to steer us on our way to gaining greater knowledge and experience.
I’m looking forward to seeing you at the webinar.