Emergency Escape and Rescue Openings are required in the New NYC Construction Code as per Section BC 1025 in R (Residential) and Group I-1 (Institutional) Occupancies.
Sleeping Rooms below the fourth story above grade shall have at least one emergency escape and rescue opening.
Where below-grade stories contain one or more sleeping rooms, emergency escape and rescue openings shall be required in each sleeping room and shall open directly in to a public street, public alley, yard or court.
- The minimum size of such openings is a minimum net clear opening of 6 square feet.
- The net clear opening height dimension shall not be less than 30"
- The net clear opening width dimension shall not be less than 24"
- The bottom of the clear opening shall not be more than 36" above the floor.
- The opening shall be operational from the inside of the room without the use of keys or tools.
- An emergency escape and rescue opening below the adjacent ground level shall be provided with a window well with a minimum horizontal area of 9 Sq Ft, with a minimum dimension of 36".
- Window wells with a depth of more than 44" shall be equipped with an approved permanent ladder or steps.
There are exceptions listed in the Code under Section 1025.1. The above is an abbreviation/summary of the full Code requirement. Please refer to the Building Code Text for full details.
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