Areas of Refuge
During an emergency evacuation, you should never use the elevator, but what do you do if you are physically unable to descend the stairs? You should seek out an area of refuge.
Areas of Refuge (sometimes called Areas of Rescue or Areas of Rescue Assistance) are designated areas where individuals can safely wait for emergency personnel to respond. They are often situated near or inside building stair wells and are usually clearly marked with a sign. In addition, each area of refuge has a phone that should be used to alert emergency responders that you need assistance.
If a building does not have an area of refuge, or you don't know where it is, go to the nearest stair well, as marked on the building evacuation signs. Use the call box located there or use your cell phone to call 9-1-1 to alert emergency personnel to your location.
Please do not wait for an emergency to occur before you become familiar with the location of these areas. Knowing these locations in advance will enable you to calmly proceed to the appropriate location during an emergency.