What is means of egress? Why is it necessary?
In regards to a building, means of egress is a continuous and unobstructed path of travel from any accessible point in the building to a public way. For example, your front door would be a means of egress, or a way out of the building. Doors are not the only means of egress; windows with a minimum opening can also be a means of egress.
For all residential buildings, windows that meet egress are required in sleeping areas. The minimum window size to meet egress must have a net clear opening of not less than 5.7 square feet, the window sill may not be higher than 44 inches above the floor, and the clear opening height must be a minimum of 24 inches.
The minimums size is required so that someone could crawl out of the window in case of a fire or safety hazard, and also, so a first responder can crawl in with their equipment to rescue anyone inside. It is important to keep the windows in all sleeping areas unobstructed, so that they may be used as a means of egress in case of emergency. Means of egress is only one of the many building codes that help protect against loss of life in a fire or similar emergency.
Safety is our number one concern at Amber Edge Drafting! We help our clients incorporate these code requirements into their design as we go through our design phase.