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Wayfinding is more than just signage
Evacuation Map Design
Fire Evacuation Plans and Evacuation Diagrams 
Your local fire code might require the posting of building evacuation diagrams. Public and commercial buildings are required to have a Emergency Action Plan (EPA). An EAP details the actions employees and building occupants must take in the event of a crisis. An important component of the EPA is the Fire Evacuation Plan which graphically illustrate the fire safety protocols. Depending on the building type and location, a building evacuation map (sign) must be posted for to meet local fire code requirements. Briefly, a building evacuation map, must include a floor plan, viewer location and egress routes to fire exits, and depending on the jurisdiction, the location of all fire safety equipment, building locations, etc.

What Are the Codes and Standards?

  • Much has been written into fire codes and occupational safety regulations about the necessity of posting fire evacuation diagrams. They are required by law in most facilities, yet visit any building with a posted fire evacuation sign and you will find as many different graphic variations as there are buildings. With the absence of a nationally recognized standard to guide facility managers and sign designers with evacuation map development, one must ask whether all building evacuation signs are equally effective? Can diagram size, color, floor plan orientation, text or icon styles affect viewer response during an emergency? At Pictographix, we take building evacuation map design very seriously and deploy only 'best practice' design principles to achieve the best results.

The use of CAD generated floor plans does NOT guarantee functional diagrams!

  • The use of modern technology has been a tremendous boon to graphic designers and the sign trade. However, the task of implementing and producing an aesthetic as well as functional building evacuation sign program requires more than computer software knowledge. An effective safety sign program requires an understanding of the local fire ordinance requirements, international norms governing safety sign graphics and an understanding of wayfinding signage principals governing occupant traffic flow and sign placement.   

Does Design Matter? 

  • With over 30% of the general population affected by reading difficulty and color blindness, the addition of proper design elements does make a difference. Many fire and building evacuation signs are accepted by local fire inspectors, yet fail to communicate safety information legibly and effectively. With insufficient safety information, improper floor plan orientation, lettering size or floor plan clutter, many emergency evacuation diagrams can actually cause confusion and slow down evacuation.     

EvacMap safety signs are viewer friendly, code compliant and aesthetically pleasing.

  • We believe that wayfinding is more than just signage. Project managers will work closely with the client to design a sign systems best suited to the working environment and safety requirements. Well versed in wayfinding and sign design principles, every technical plan we receive is carefully scrutinized, simplified and re-drawn to scale. Clients benefit from our extensive experience working on projects in just about every building classification type. 

  • Re-drafted floor plans include all rooms, offices, exit locations, heavy equipment/machinery locations and staircases as needed.
  • Internationally recognized Safety Icons designating the location of safety equipment included no charge: fire hoses, fire extinguishers, first aid center, fire control panel and as needed, sprinkler, gas, electric or other utility shut-off locations.
  • A "You Are Here" icon designating the viewer location with the nearest primary and secondary egress route to exits are labeled.
  • Exits designated for persons with physical disabilities are included as needed.

Turnkey Service

  • Architectural drawings (PDF) received in CAD file format or on paper are easily managed by our design team. The company logo or building identification can be applied to diagrams as needed. Numerous internationally recognized safety icons are available. Custom requested icons and symbols are also provided no charge. Evacuation maps are meticulously checked for oversights and all maps are guaranteed to arrive as you ordered error free and installation ready.  
  • Digital scanning capabilities for larger drawings.
  • Corporate logo placement and icons added free of charge. 
  • Lamination services and custom framing.
  • Thermal color printing on clear vinyl film for PL signs

Your specific evacuation procedures are carefully considered during the initial design stages. Color coded elements are added to emphasize the designated Exit Routes or 'No Exit' zones. Standard or customized 'Emergency Evacuation Instructions' could also be included on your signs. Each sign is customized to meet facility and aesthetic requirements.


Please be aware that fire safety ordinance requirements are applied on a case by case basis. Contact your local Fire Prevention Officer or the authority having jurisdiction before beginning your evacuation sign project.



Quality Control - Accuracy


As a remote supplier, PictoGraphix has set up a thorough in-house data verification system which  includes offering client access to artwork proofs (Client Access Portal). Drawings are printed or framed only following client approval of all artwork proofs. Each projects allows for client revisions to artwork.


Fire Codes


Depending on the jurisdiction and the local fire code, graphic requirements for building evacuation diagrams can vary. 


Until such time that a national consensus for Building Evacuation Maps is developed by regulatory bodies, PictoGraphix will employ recommendations made by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the International Building Code (IBC).



Prior to starting your building evacuation sign project, we always recommend that the local fire inspector is contacted for any specific emergency evacuation diagram graphic requirements.

  Contact Us

"Providing Visible Safety Solutions"


U.S.A./Canada call Toll Free: 1-800-504-3822
International:  514-369-2444

PictoGraphix, Inc.
In Canada:  51A Westminster Avenue N., Montreal, QC H4X 1Y8

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