Everything You Need to Know About Evacuation Chairs

In emergencies, ensuring the swift and safe evacuation of all occupants is paramount. Amidst this, mobility-challenged individuals face obstacles when navigating stairs. So, what's the solution to this?

The solution is an Emergency Evacuation chair.

Evacuation chairs are crucial for safely evacuating people with mobility issues from tall buildings, ensuring their safe descent. You find it amusing that the global emergency evacuation chair market reached an estimated value of USD 90.61 million in 2022 and is expected to achieve USD 120.95 million by 2028. 

This article explores the significance, functionality, benefits, and considerations associated with these essential evacuation of emergency evacuation chairs.

What is an Evacuation Chair?

Evacuation chairs are vital tools for safely evacuating individuals with mobility impairments during emergencies, particularly in buildings where stairs present obstacles. They come in three main types:

  • Standard Manual Evacuation Chairs: Operated manually by trained personnel, suitable for most evacuation scenarios.
  • Motorized Evacuation Chairs: Powered by batteries or electric motors, requiring less physical effort, ideal for larger buildings or frequent evacuations.
  • Track or Stair Climbing Evacuation Chairs: Fitted with tracks or treads, facilitating safe stair traversal, offering efficient multi-story building evacuation.

Key Features to Look for in an Evacuation Chair

A good evacuation chair for stairs must have the features to safeguard individuals with disabilities during emergencies. Here’s an emergency evacuation chair specifications to follow in next purchase: 

  • Robust and durable construction.
  • Lightweight and maneuverable design.
  • Padded seating, secure straps, and headrests for comfort and safety.
  • Compact folding for convenient storage.
  • Braking systems for controlled descent on stairs.
  • Accessibility and ease of use for evacuees and operators.

Importance of Evacuation Chairs in Emergency Situations

Evacuation chairs are indispensable in emergencies. They assist individuals with mobility limitations. Here's why they're so vital:

  • Safety and Accessibility: Evacuation chairs for stairs ensure all occupants, including those with disabilities, injuries, or mobility issues, can safely exit multi-story buildings, ensuring equal access to evacuation routes.
  • Compliance with Regulation: Mandatory in many jurisdictions, emergency evacuation chairs fulfill legal requirements, such as those set by the ADA, ensuring buildings meet accessibility standards.
  • Efficient Evacuations: By swiftly transporting individuals downstairs, evacuation chairs as chair lift evacuation equipment expedite evacuations, reducing congestion and potential injury risks, which is crucial in time-sensitive situations.
  • Risk Mitigation: Their deployment demonstrates proactive risk management, reducing liability for building owners, managers, and employers and safeguarding occupants.
  • Empowering Independence: Evacuation chairs empower individuals with mobility impairments, enabling active participation in their evacuation and fostering self-reliance and confidence.

How Evacuation Chairs Work

Evacuation chairs help move people with mobility issues during emergencies. Knowing how to use them properly is essential. Here’s a simple guide to using an evacuation chair:

  1. Preparation: Ensure the evacuation chair is easily accessible and properly stored.
  2. Deployment: Unfold the chair and lock it into place according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  3. Seating the Individual: Safely transfer the person needing assistance into the chair, securing them with any provided straps or belts.
  4. Descent: Use the chair's mechanisms, such as tracked systems or handles, to carefully guide the chair down stairs or other obstacles.
  5. Evacuation: Continue to navigate to a safe location, ensuring stability and control throughout the process.

Training and Repairs

  • Who Should Be Trained: All staff members, including security personnel, building managers, and designated safety officers, should be trained in using evacuation chairs. Moreover, multi-story buildings can arrange evacuation chair training for residents to be familiar with their operation in case of emergency. 
  • Required Training: Regular training sessions should be conducted to ensure everyone knows how to operate the chairs confidently. This includes hands-on practice, understanding safety features, and learning how to handle various emergency scenarios. For more information one can search evacuation chair training videos on the internet. 
  • Regular Inspections and Repairs: Inspect the chair regularly for wear and tear, ensuring all parts work properly. Keep the chair clean and address any damage or malfunctions promptly to ensure it is always ready for use.

Benefits of Using Evacuation Chairs

As buildings become increasingly complex and populated, the need for efficient evacuation methods becomes more pressing. The benefits of emergency stair evacuation chairs are numerous:

  • Safety and Efficiency in Evacuations: Evacuation chairs ensure swift and safe evacuation, minimizing panic and injury risks during emergencies and enhancing overall building safety protocols. 
  • Accessibility for Individuals with Mobility Issues: These chairs offer a crucial means for safely evacuating people with disabilities or mobility impairments, ensuring inclusivity in emergency evacuation plans.
  • Less strain on Transporters: Evacuation chairs evenly distribute weight between two operators, with some models featuring a rubber track system for additional load reduction.
  • Compliance with Safety Regulations: Utilizing evacuation chairs demonstrates adherence to legal safety mandates, reassuring occupants and authorities of the building's commitment to comprehensive emergency preparedness.


Evacuation chairs ensure a swift and safe evacuation with mobility limitations during emergencies. By providing accessibility, complying with regulations, expediting evacuations, mitigating risks, and empowering independence, these essential devices play a vital role in comprehensive emergency preparedness strategies.

Overall, the Evacuation chair for stairs is integral to comprehensive emergency protocols, ensuring the safety and well-being of all occupants in multi-story buildings.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1- Are there any specific regulations and standards for evacuation chairs?

Ans- Yes, evacuation chairs are regulated by standards from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to ensure safety and usability during emergencies.

Q2- How does an evacuation chair compare to other emergency mobility devices?

Ans- Compared to stair chairs and sledges, evacuation chairs are preferred for their ease of use and versatility. But make sure to assess the situation before determining the best option. 

Q3- How do I choose the right evacuation chair for my building?

Ans- To choose the right evacuation chair, consider its weight capacity, maneuverability, storage, and ease of use. Assess your building layout and consult suppliers for guidance. 

Q4- What is the average cost of an evacuation chair, and what factors influence it?

Ans- Evacuation chair prices vary based on brand, model, and features. Basic ones start at a few hundred dollars, while advanced models can cost several thousand. You can learn more about emergency evacuation chairs at Medsupply and purchase as per your need. 

Q5- What are the top evacuation chair brands, and where can I buy them?

Ans- Evac+Chair, Stryker, Ferno, and Garaventa offer various evacuation chairs based on your budget. You can find all these evacuation chairs at medsupply

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