OSHA Exit Sign

OSHA Exit Sign Overview

Installing self luminous exit signs is only step one in prepping your building for the next inspection by OSHA (Operational Safetey and Health Administration). Other safeguards must be taken to ensure occupants can safely leave your building during an emergency.


OSHA is tasked with helping businesses cut down on all work-related injuries. Since 1970, they have slashed workplace casualties by more than 60%. OSHA regularly sends field agents across the country to perform inspections and issue citations to non-compliant businesses.

To learn more about bringing your building up to code, check out OSHA's Consultation Program.

Exit Route Terminology

Per OSHA, an exit route is:

"a continuous and unobstructed path of exit travel from any point within a workplace to a place of safety."

Three Facets of an Exit Route

  1. Exit access - part of exit route leading to an exit door.
  2. Exit - part of the route that provides a protected path to the exit discharge.
  3. Exit discharge - door that leads outside or to a public refuge area.

How Many Self Luminous Exit Signs Do I Need?

Typically, work environments require at least two exit signs per floor. The size of your building and the number of employees will increase or decrease this number.

If OSHA can't answer your questions in time, call SLES at 800-379-1129 or email our production staff for a quicker response.

See Our Black Self Luminous Exit Signs

Building Requirements for Exit Routes

  • Exit discharges must lead outside to a street, walkway, refuge area, public way or open space.
  • Stairs leading to an exit must have interior doors marked 'exit' leading to the point of egress.
  • Side hinged doors must swing in the direction of exit travel along the egress path.
  • Exit route ceilings must be at least 7'-6" high.
  • Exit route hallways can be no less than 28" wide at all points.
  • Interior exit route doors must never be locked.
  • No devices or alarms that could restrict travel are allowed along an egress path.


To learn more about OSHA's approved emergency exit routes, download the General Facts Sheet. For more information about OSHA in general, visit AllAboutOsha.com.

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