Über Notlicht | 17. March 2017

Emergency lighting in the stairwell

A power failure is nothing out of the ordinary anymore. In January 2017 Innsbruck had a blackout, for 40 minutes two thirds of the city were without electricity.

On 8th March 2017 a one-hour outage occurred in Vienna on Donaufelder Strasse. The reason for this was water that entered a transformer room and paralyzed the power supply. 1800 households were affected, including numerous rental apartments.

But who is taking responsibility in this case if the emergency lighting does not work properly?

The obligations of the landlord or the property managers are often not clearly defined, but in this case it is obvious. The landlord or the property management assigned by him have to ensure that the tenant can leave the building safely in case of a hazard or power failure. This also includes appropriate emergency lighting, which brightens the escape routes even in the dark in stairwells and garages.

The building owner/ landlord is liable in case of damage in the event of a powercut, unless the obligation to maintain safety systems has been outsourced or delegated.

In case of a power failure the underground garage or the staircase is pitch-dark and tenants could not only get panicky, but also stumble and hurt themselves.

The law requires that the emergency lighting must be controlled regularly to ensure that it functions properly in case of emergencies.

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