Tunnels

Cover of Suggested Good Practice for Road Tunnel Emergency Egress Signage
Suggested Good Practice for Road Tunnel Emergency Egress Signage
  • Publication no: AP-R583-18
  • ISBN: 978-1-925671-78-0
  • Published: 24 September 2018

This report provides guidance on consistent, efficient and safe design of emergency egress signage and operations in road tunnels.

While there are Australian Standards relating to emergency egress signage, these were not originally intended for use in road tunnels until they were referenced by AS 4825: Tunnel Fire Safety in 2011. In the absence of an AS/NZ design standard that is specifically intended for use in road tunnels, jurisdictions have developed bespoke requirements for road tunnel emergency signage. The requirements vary between jurisdictions and between tunnels within the same jurisdiction, reflecting requirements that have evolved from project to project in the absence of a standard that recognises the fire safety hazards specific to road tunnels.

Most motorists would have no experience of evacuating a road tunnel. While fire drills are conducted in buildings to familiarise occupants with evacuation routes, this is not possible for tunnel users. Additionally, most buildings follow a standard evacuation process which involves descending a fire stair to the ground level and exiting the building. Due to the length, varying alignment and arrangement of road tunnels, occupants can be exposed to numerous evacuation route types.

Consequentially, providing clear instruction and direction to tunnel occupants during an incident is vital for successful self-evacuation activities. A key component to provide this direction is the provision of emergency egress signage within the tunnel.

    • 1. Introduction
      • 1.1 Background
      • 1.2 Project Objectives
      • 1.3 Scope of Study
      • 1.4 Methodology
      • 1.5 Definitions
    • 2. Information Gathering
      • 2.1 Relevant Existing Standards
      • 2.2 Existing Road Tunnel Emergency Egress Signage
      • 2.3 Operational Experiences and Inputs
    • 3. Tunnel Emergency Egress
      • 3.1 Overview of Detection and Evacuation
      • 3.2 Detection Phase
        • 3.2.1 Overview
        • 3.2.2 Emergency Egress Signage Requirements
        • 3.2.3 Emergency Systems
      • 3.3 Pre-movement Phase
        • 3.3.1 Overview
        • 3.3.2 Emergency Egress Signage Requirements
        • 3.3.3 Emergency Systems
      • 3.4 Movement Phase
        • 3.4.1 Overview
        • 3.4.2 Emergency Egress Signage Requirements
        • 3.4.3 Emergency Systems
      • 3.5 Summary
      • 3.6 Evacuation process
      • 3.7 Emergency Services Response
      • 3.8 Tunnel Operator Response
      • 3.9 Operational Tunnel Feedback
        • 3.9.1 Sydney Harbour Tunnel
        • 3.9.2 Eastern Distributor, Sydney
        • 3.9.3 Waterview Tunnel, Auckland
        • 3.9.4 Discussion
    • 4. Tunnel Emergency Egress Signage
      • 4.1 Egress Route Identification
        • 4.1.1 Purpose
        • 4.1.2 Current Examples
        • 4.1.3 Discussion
        • 4.1.4 Recommendations
      • 4.2 Egress Point Identification
        • 4.2.1 Purpose
        • 4.2.2 Current Examples
        • 4.2.3 Discussion
        • 4.2.4 Recommendations
      • 4.3 Egress Passages
        • 4.3.1 Purpose
        • 4.3.2 Current Examples
        • 4.3.3 Discussion
        • 4.3.4 Recommendations
      • 4.4 Refuge Space Indication
        • 4.4.1 Purpose
        • 4.4.2 Current Examples
        • 4.4.3 Discussion
        • 4.4.4 Recommendations
      • 4.5 In-tunnel Emergency Facility Signage
        • 4.5.1 Purpose
        • 4.5.2 Current Examples
        • 4.5.3 Discussion
        • 4.5.4 Recommendations
      • 4.6 In-tunnel Positioning Signs
        • 4.6.1 Purpose
        • 4.6.2 Current Examples
        • 4.6.3 Discussion
        • 4.6.4 Recommendations
    • 5. Conclusions and Recommendations
    • References
    • Appendix A Recommended Egress Signage
    • Appendix B Typical Egress Signage Schematics
      • B.1 Typical Egress Point Signage
      • B.2 Typical Fire Door Signage
      • B.3 Typical In-Tunnel Emergency Egress Signage
      • B.4 Typical Emergency Refuge Area Signage
    • Appendix C Review of Current Standards and Guidelines
      • C.1 Road Agency Specific Requirements
        • C.1.1 Roads and Maritime Services (RMS)
        • C.1.2 Other Road Agencies
      • C.2 Austroads Publications
        • C.2.1 Austroads Guide to Road Tunnels
      • C.3 Australian and New Zealand Standards, Codes and Guides
        • C.3.1 Building Code of Australia
        • C.3.2 New Zealand Building Code
      • C.4 Australian Standards
        • C.4.1 AS 4825 – Tunnel fire safety
        • C.4.2 AS 2293 – Emergency Escape Lighting and Exit Signs
      • C.5 International Practice
        • C.5.1 PIARC
        • C.5.2 BD 78/99 – Design of Road Tunnels
        • C.5.3 Directive 2004/54/EC
        • C.5.4 National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP)
        • C.5.5 Federal Highways Administration (FHWA)
        • C.5.6 NFPA 502
        • C.5.7 CETU
        • C.5.8 ASFiNAG
      • C.6 Summary
    • Appendix D Review of Current Egress Signage within Australasian Road Tunnels
      • D.1 General
      • D.2 Reference Tunnel Summaries
        • D.2.1 West Gate Tunnel, Melbourne
        • D.2.2 New M5 (WestConnex Stage 2), Sydney
        • D.2.3 M4 East (WestConnex Stage 1B), Sydney
        • D.2.4 NorthConnex Tunnel, Sydney
        • D.2.5 Waterview Tunnel, Auckland
        • D.2.6 Legacy Way, Brisbane
        • D.2.7 Victoria Park Tunnel, Auckland
        • D.2.8 Airport Link M7, Brisbane
        • D.2.9 Clem7 Tunnel, Brisbane
        • D.2.10 EastLink, Melbourne
        • D.2.11 Lane Cove Tunnel, Sydney
        • D.2.12 Cross City Tunnel, Sydney
        • D.2.13 Burnley Tunnel (CityLink), Melbourne
        • D.2.14 Eastern Distributor, Sydney
        • D.2.15 Sydney Harbour Tunnel, Sydney
    • Appendix E Operational Experiences and Inputs
      • E.1 Transurban
      • E.2 Sydney Harbour Tunnel
      • E.3 Waterview Tunnel Joint Operation
      • E.4 International Studies
        • E.4.1 PIARC
        • E.4.2 NHCRP