New St locked emergency exits

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jamesst

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Incidentally the Merseyrail underground has a fairly advanced system. If the fire alarm does sound then only the fire doors leading away from the activation zone will open and the evacuation announcements take this into account. I'm not sure if other main line stations or London underground work this way
 
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wildcard

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I am only surprised it took so long . Twice in the last three journeys when I have taken the train to New Street from Aston ( Saturday evening after football - arrives platform 12A ) someone has used the emergency door at the top of the stairs to leave the station . No alarm sounded .
 

Bletchleyite

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I am only surprised it took so long . Twice in the last three journeys when I have taken the train to New Street from Aston ( Saturday evening after football - arrives platform 12A ) someone has used the emergency door at the top of the stairs to leave the station . No alarm sounded .

Surely an alarm, CCTV for evidence and strategically positioned security guards and RPIs at busy times would solve that. Using the emergency exit to circumvent the ticket barrier when not holding a ticket is a slam-dunk RoRA prosecution, not to mention a Byelaw offence of using the door other than in an emergency.
 

causton

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It's not that hard for an average person to shove a maglocked door open outwards (or even to pull one open inwards, for someone of reasonable strength)
I was thinking that. I used to work in a shopping centre with one and they didn't issue enough cards for the amount of staff, but a hefty backwards kick usually opened it!
 

duffield

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I was thinking that. I used to work in a shopping centre with one and they didn't issue enough cards for the amount of staff, but a hefty backwards kick usually opened it!

We have these magnetic locks in the building where I work. On one occasion I failed to press the door opening plunger fully and then just pushed fairly hard at the door without realizing, and it popped open.
 

Starmill

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I just don't like the idea of unnecessarily hampering escape just to stop the odd fare dodger making off. It just seems totally the wrong way round to me. (Ticket barriers don't give me the same feeling because they can easily be barged or jumped - though someone less able-bodied may well feel differently - certainly where they are remote monitored the "open" button should be large and prominent and a power failure should automatically release them).
If the fire alarm goes off, all of the ticket gates in the station will open. I've been at Birmingham New Street when the fire alarm has gone off and let me tell you, you won't be missing it. It's so loud it caused my ears to ring, and it's accompanied by red flashing beacons and intermittent voice saying 'leave by the nearest exit'.
 

jon0844

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I can just imagine the station on fire and everyone rushing out, leaving some bloke sitting in the middle of it looking up from his phone and wondering where everyone went.
 

Bletchleyite

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That's probably because historic experience has repeatedly demonstrated that the traditional ways of doing things (fire alarm bell, emergency announcements over the tannoy and indeed human evacuation wardens shouting at people) simply didn't work well enough at New Street.
And of course it now has to be stupidly loud simply to get through to the people with headphones on and the hordes who are permanently engrossed in their smartphones. :(

That's not just a station thing. I believe building fire alarms are deliberately very loud in order that people are uncomfortable enough that they cannot wilfully ignore them (as well as to ensure they are heard).
 

John Webb

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That's not just a station thing. I believe building fire alarms are deliberately very loud in order that people are uncomfortable enough that they cannot wilfully ignore them (as well as to ensure they are heard).
There is a requirement in the British Standard for fire alarm systems that the sound level is so many decibels above the ambient noise level. (I haven't got a copy to hand these days so can't say what that figure is!)
 

DennisM

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All of the people unhappy with this arrangement should avoid travelling on any trains built this century, as you won’t be able to open the train doors in an emergency until if and when the driver decides to stop the train!
 

Bletchleyite

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All of the people unhappy with this arrangement should avoid travelling on any trains built this century, as you won’t be able to open the train doors in an emergency until if and when the driver decides to stop the train!

A building is rather different from a moving train, given that to jump from a train moving at speed is likely to result in death anyway.

However, I must admit I prefer the German arrangement of an emergency brake (which does stop the train there and then) and a separate passcom for talking to the driver about less pressing issues. If you consider something like the Eschede derailment, had someone pulled the former there (they didn't) the train may have been saved - blabbing about it for a bit caused it to hit a turnout with disastrous results.
 

mmh

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I am only surprised it took so long . Twice in the last three journeys when I have taken the train to New Street from Aston ( Saturday evening after football - arrives platform 12A ) someone has used the emergency door at the top of the stairs to leave the station . No alarm sounded .

It's very common for doors which will trigger alarms, and alarm points, not to sound an audible alarm. A mass panic evacuation is often the last thing you want in a crowded public environment. You'll often see signs along the lines of "activate the alarm, no sound will be heard".
 

bionic

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However, I must admit I prefer the German arrangement of an emergency brake (which does stop the train there and then)

So the train is on fire and someone activates the alarm in a tunnel, on a viaduct, embankment etc? Or little Johnny pulls a passcom in the rear coach of a packed DOO rush hour 12 car right across the station throat of a major terminal?
There are very good reasons why they don't fit that type of passcom to trains any more.
 

Islineclear3_1

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Most large public buildings run a regular fire test/drill to test systems and safe evacuation etc. I've never encountered this on a railway station

I can understand where Bletchleyite is coming from - where is the reassurance that the fire exit doors will open if the fire alarm sounds. If they are not used/tested regularly and the doors fail - heaven knows what might happen next. Will the fire doors open in the event of an electrical failure?
 

Llanigraham

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Most large public buildings run a regular fire test/drill to test systems and safe evacuation etc. I've never encountered this on a railway station

I can understand where Bletchleyite is coming from - where is the reassurance that the fire exit doors will open if the fire alarm sounds. If they are not used/tested regularly and the doors fail - heaven knows what might happen next. Will the fire doors open in the event of an electrical failure?
Yes they are tested to take into account all sorts of incidents.
As I said earlier, these sorts of doors are far more common than some here seem to think. Think restaurants, theatres, cinemas, shopping malls, and office blocks.
If you aren't going to use buildings so equipped I suggest you are going to have a problem doing lots of things.
 
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