Cost Benefits of Solar Panels

Why is solar power so important in today’s world and how does it effect us are some vital issues to understand? The traditional energy resources are diminishing day by day, so alternative energy sources must be sought out. The sun is the best source of all energy; it is clean, clear, eco-friendly and does not emit any dangerous by-products.

The cost involved in installing a solar panel on your own roof to provide the required power is as per needs and size and starts at a few thousand pounds and goes up to tens of thousands for industrial systems. The feed-in-tariff makes it mandatory for the energy company to pay all householders producing solar power an amount per unit of electricity. This is a guaranteed payment till 2035, so if your home has solar panels you receive a payment for the next 25 years.

The average cost of the entire exercise of designing, planning and installing a 4KW panel on your roof costs about 12.000 pounds. Moreover, it has been estimated that houses enjoy an increase in property valuation by nearly 10,000 British pounds and more. Installation does not require any special permission; however, a professional installation company can look after such documentations and formalities.

There are three types of panels to choose from, so how do you choose the right one? The most expensive type is the highly efficient mono crystalline solar cells that can be easily installed in a comparatively small area. The next best one is the not-so-efficient polycrystalline solar panel cut out from a few silicon crystals. The third type is the modern amorphous solar panel which has a thin slice of amorphous silicon. This is slightly less efficient than the other two types of solar panels. Now you have to choose from these according to their outputs and your needs.

The Renewable Energy Association formed the REAL Assurance Scheme that makes an installation company legally bound to install a proper solar panel for householders and provide a life long maintenance. The power companies involved in this scheme are also officially responsible to pay the home owners for the next 25 years and more for feeding energy into the national grid.

So does it pay to invest in a solar panel of your own and pay no more energy or electricity bills? Yes it does, the average installation in Leeds is providing a return of between 7% and 10%, where the average temperature is not more than 16 degrees Celsius.

New Face of Homelessness

Darlene and Jacob. Teddy. Craig and Margie. All are the new faces of poverty. I met them working on a television story for HDNet’s World Report. The piece is about the impact of the economy on public hospitals. Many hospitals around the country like Denver Health Medical Center are giving away millions and millions of dollars in uncompensated charitable care. For DHMC it was $300 million in 2008. In 2009 the administration is expecting the number to increase to $350 million. That burden is driving many public hospitals into insolvency. The reason the numbers are so staggering is partly because of people who were getting by but now find themselves jobless and uninsured.

Six months ago Darlene and Jacob, Teddy, and Craig and Margie had jobs, homes and middle class incomes to support themselves and their families. Now two families are experiencing homelessness and the other teeters on the brink. Their falls have been fast and hard. Darlene has a college degree and worked in the mortgage industry until October. Her husband Jacob was a tree trimmer. They made over $65,000 a year and at one time lived in a five bedroom home. For months they were on the street with three children in tow. They never in their wildest dreams imagined they would be homeless. They have each other and hope. That’s about it. When they need medical attention they get by on local and state assistance programs. Private health care won’t help them. They thank God for Denver Health.

Teddy lost his job as a machine operator before Thanksgiving. This single dad is living in his father’s house now and was unable to afford his medical expenses when he recently broke two ribs. All he wants is work and being unable to support his family is making him depressed. Craig used to look at homeless people and say “get a job.” Then he lost his supervisor position at a shopping mall before Christmas. He had just returned from a training course in California. He got stiffed by his employer for the expense money. Now he sleeps under the railroad tracks and his fiancee, Margie, is in a shelter. They sell the Homeless Voice newspaper on the 16th Street Mall to survive. People walk by them as though they are invisible. Craig’s feet are covered with blisters from walking everywhere. Margie worries about Craig’s safety every time she says goodnight to him. Now when he sees worse off homeless people he takes them leftover food or a smoke. He doesn’t view them the same way.

They say many of us are one paycheck or one crisis away from homelessness. As more and more people lose their jobs, their insurance and their homes, the face of homelessness is changing. The folks at Colorado Coalition for the Homeless ( say its a state of emergency. The safety net is full of holes. For Darlene, Jacob, Teddy, Craig and Margie it just sucks.

Natural Cures For Insomnia To Sleep Like A Baby

Do you toss and turn every night? Can not sleep properly and easily? You may have insomnia.

Insomnia, unbeknownst to us is due to depression or mood disorders. Popping pills may an immediate relief, however, the danger of getting reliant on sleeping pills is always there and the real cause of insomnia will not be resolved. This might make the problem even worse, insomniacs will never be able to sleep without the aid of sleeping pills, so further depression will develop. In this case, natural cures for insomnia are your best bet.

Mood is developed by the body, the body has energy flowing in it, meaning the energy influences our mood. With this in mind, making sure that the energy is being used properly is an utmost goal.

The first thing that comes to mind when talking about energy healing, is pranic healing. This natural cure for insomnia is all about life energy or "prana". This method came from the belief that our body has the power to heal itself so, healing is just being accelerated by increasing the rate of self-recovery. A "no touch" method, these works like acupuncture only no needles are needed. In this modality, the practiceer remove the barriers in the energy flow of our body and then charging the area with high frequency to allow faster healing.

Our mood is directly correlated with our heart which is the fourth chakra, according to chakra healing, another natural cure for insomnia. In this method, the heart chakra is the focus of the therapy. The healer will create a balance in the chakra by using jade, emerald or rose quartz. They may also disclose you to do yoga or meditation, which both help in balancing the energy flow in this area.

Doing healing on your own is another natural cure for insomnia. Affirmations can help remove depression and anxiety, with this, EFT or Emotional Freedom Technique can be of good use. In this healing method, you tap yourself in areas of your body while saying affirmations, positive things about yourself. EFT helps you recognize your inabilities while still telling yourself that you're valued. In this way, your body and mind develops peacefulness and gains a sense of acceptance.

All of these natural cures for insomnia involves healing the heart and making energy flow through it properly therefore, taking good care of our heart is essential in having a balanced and healthy life.

A sound sleep is a good sign of achieving that balance.

The In’s and Out’s of Breast Augmentation Plastic Surgery

Every year thousands of women decide to make a change to their bodies through plastic surgery. Each of them has their own personal reasons but they all choose to do so in hopes of bettering their appearance and their self esteem. The type of Denver plastic surgery they are choosing to get done is breast augmentation.

This procedure improves the woman’s body image, enhances their overall figure and achieves their perfect chest size. For each individual, the desired results are going to be different. Some women may only want minor alterations, while others hope to see a big change. Plus, it is important to remember that size isn’t the only reason for breast augmentation surgery; shape is a major consideration, as well.

After a consultation with a plastic surgeon, a candidate should come away with a realistic perspective on what to expect from breast implants and Colorado breast augmentation. Choosing the type of procedure and the appropriate size is all part of this consultation process.

Colorado breast augmentation is among the top Denver plastic surgery procedures for women of all ages. However, not many of these women know what the main components of the actual implant are or how the actual procedure is performed. While your plastic surgeon can a brief summary of the procedure and answer your more basic questions about the implants, there are a few important details you should probably learn about the surgery on your own.

If you or someone you know is looking for ways to improve your overall appearance, increase self-esteem or just correct a minor figure flaw, there is a strong possibility that you may be a good candidate for Colorado breast augmentation or breast enhancement procedure. There are other reasons why women pursue breast enhancement surgery such as:

o Shrinkage of the breast size after extreme weight loss

o Uneven breasts

o Loss of breasts after cancer treatment, an accident or surgery

o Balancing out body proportions

o Correcting sagging breasts

o Improving the shape and contour of the breasts after having children

The procedure itself is somewhat simple. It consists of the insertion of a silicone bag under the breast or under the breast and chest muscle. The bag is then filled with saline or salt water. This prosthesis expands the breast area, providing a fuller breast through increased cup size, giving the woman a better contour, and producing more cleavage.

Unusual Warning Signs

Warning signs are used by private companies at the workplace in order to protect the employees of potential risks. They are also used on the public roads under the form of traffic signs. A traffic warning sign indicates a hazard that may not be readily apparent ahead on the road.

As an international rule, in most countries the public roads traffic usually take the shape of an equilateral triangle with a thick red border and white background. However, from country to country both the color and thickness of the border and of the background may vary. For example, in the People’s Republic of China they appear with a yellow background and a black border.

In Greece, Iceland, Sweden, Finland, Serbia, Poland, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the Republic of Macedonia the traffic signs have an amber background and a red border. In Svalbard, the polar bear warning sign displays a white bear on black background. Some countries such as Spain, Norway, and France have adopted an amber or orange background for construction signs or road work.

In some countries in place of the standard triangular shape, they have a diamond shape. In Mexico, Canada, the United States, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Japan, and most of South America the warning signs are diamond-shaped and black on a yellow background, while temporary signs such as the construction signs are black on an orange background.

Most usually contain a symbol but they can also contain only text. In the United Stated they are based on a standard, while in Europe they are based on the Vienna Convention.

Even older than that is the usage of first roadside signs, the ancient milestones giving distance measures. In the past, prior to the 19th century, hazard warnings were rare. The occasional specimens were usually specific warning about horse-drawn vehicles backing up. More complex signage systems emerged in the 20th century, with the appearance of motorcars. As the vehicle speeds and the traffic volume increased, nighttime use capability and sign visibility gained more significance.

Modern traffic signs can indicate any potential condition, obstacle, or hazard requiring special attention. Due to necessity to comply with the European regulations, the British government will have some road signs totally redesigned or axed. Some of these in presently in place in Britain are baffling, misleading, and confusing to many motorists, while some unusual warning signs are straightly weird or funny. This is especially true if some tourists from overseas view them for the first time. Some examples are:

· “X-Box Red Ring of Death” which means that all vehicles are prohibited except pedal cycles being pushed by pedestrians.

· “I Pity the Fool!” meaning no through road for vehicular traffic.

· “Visit the mother-in-law” that really means Tourist attraction recognised by the Welsh Tourist Board.

· “Punch the bag and see what’s inside” that really means a Lane control signal.

· “Giant moles may pop up under your vehicle at any time” which really means risk of grounding at a railway.

· “Giant numbered-boxes floating in nearby lake” which really means the number of a route for pedal cycles.

· “Danger. There’s a frying pan and camping stove on the road ahead” which really means that slow-moving military vehicles are likely to be in the road or crossing.

For more funny and unusual warning signs used in private companies take a look online.

Spray Foam Roofing

Spray foam roofing is an interesting roofing material consisting of two different liquid materials that combine to form a seamless roofing material. After mixing, the foam expands over 20 times to form a complete solid roof. These roofs are popular for the speed in which they can be applied, while providing high performance water resistance and insulation.

Abbreviated SPF, spray foam roofing becomes an adhesive, that will adhere and make a roof on almost any surface except bitumen. This means concrete, cinder block, wood and metal roofs can be covered, which leads to lower costs and less roof waste. Instead of tearing off the old roof and installing a new one SPF can be installed. Spray foam also doubles as insulation further reducing a step required on roofing contractors in Denver. Once sprayed, SPF lasts around 50 years. During that time, it will need occasional maintenance in the form of cleaning and priming.

Sometimes roofing contractors in Denver add UV resistant granules to the top coat of foam to protect it from the sun. Foam is actually pretty hardy. The word foam often turns people off, but the foam is hard and durable. They handle human traffic better than asphalt roofs, but can still be damaged from limbs and tools falling on the roofing surface. However, because it is foam roofing contractors in Denver love SPF for its insulating abilities. A square foot of the substance weighs less than three pounds. This means the rest of that material is insulating air.

In warm climates especially, SPF roofing will pay for itself with reduced energy bills on cooling. Studies show that this roofing material pays for itself in 4-5 years. Some systems have even lowered energy use by 50%. When your HVAC is just replacing cool air instead of adding to it, you can never have a truly efficient system. Few other roofing systems will pay for themselves ever. For the two polymers in the foam to correctly combine, the spraying must be done right. The gun, hose and feeding systems must all operate correctly to install a 1 to 1 ratio of the polymer bases. If something goes wrong, it must be fixed immediately or the project must be stopped. It can be hard for some roofing contractors to do this because this means swallowing the costs of redoing the roof.

Mandatory Signs Used in Prisons

As in all public places such as malls, cinemas, clubs, schools, hospitals, restaurants, hotels etc., mandatory signs with regard to safety and usage are required to be displayed. The signs keep the public and users of such places, informed on matters of safety, hygiene, behaviour etc. In the case of prisons since the inmates are under lock-down in individual cells with 24 hour security surveillance, most of the signs displayed do not apply to them.

However, inmates in prisons are allowed visitors on a regular basis. These visitors need to know how to reach the visiting area, where the visitors’ toilets are located, where the exits are in case of fire or any other calamity occurring during their visit. Signs as to what visitors can and cannot do will also be on display. Some of the more important signs found in prisons are as under:

· Signs with the word “Toilet” and an arrow showing the direction

· No smoking signs

· Fire exit signs with arrows pointing towards safety exits

· Signs warning that CCTV cameras are in use

· Follow procedure signs

· Parking signs for visitors’ vehicles

Usage of signs

It is important to note that mandatory signs should not be placed nearby to one another. By placing them in close proximity they tend to lose their significance. If required, signs that need to be seen after sunset should be illuminated so that they can be clearly seen. The prison authorities should also ensure that all signs displayed are regularly cleaned and easily seen.

Since prison staff could be on rotation duty, they need to observe all the signs posted in the prison. If the prison has more one or more floors, each floor should have a clear sign denoting which number it is. Fire alarm signs should also be posted on each floor indicating where the alarm is located in case of a fire or other such emergency.

Prisoners are also subject to illness or having an accident. Prison staff should be able to access on-the-premises medical aids, or if the incident is serious, contact the local hospital. Such information could be posted on a special sign meant for the prison authorities. The prison inmates are under their care and are entitled to proper medical attention.

Signs for prison inmates

All prisoners are required to maintain a decent level of hygiene. So signs such as “keep clean”, “no litter”, “no noise”, could be posted in the public areas of the prison such as the bathing and dining areas where prisoners gather.

Though they may not be considered as mandatory signs, every prison will have a siren which goes off when the prisoners are allowed to leave their cells, and sounds again when they return and the cell doors are automatically shut.

Notes From Barbados – Stories of Connection and a Shared History

In the early eighties, the late country music singer/songwriter John Denver wrote a love song called Shanghai Breezes. Denver wrote the song for his wife Annie during a month long tour through China. The tender lyrics remind us of how we are all connected regardless of where we are on the planet and the many differences that divide us. And the moon and the stars are the same ones you see; it’s the same old sun up in the sky; and your voice in my ear is like heaven to me; like the breezes here in old Shanghai.

With Denver’s lyrics in mind, I am reflecting on the concept of connection as it relates to human life, the planet, and the vast expanse of universe that surrounds us. We are connected through blood, friendship, geography, cultural ties, historical events, the moon and stars above and the air we breathe. We are connected through our similarities and our differences. Yin and Yang, man and woman, good and bad, black and white; diversity is essential for life as we know it.

The study of Cybernetics in nature focuses on separate yet related systems such as organisms, ecologies and even entire societies; these systems are interconnected through a complex feedback loop with multiple layers of heterogeneous, interacting components. Each system has the potential to effect change in another. Even the most subtle act can result in resounding transformation across multiple layers and systems. The teachings of Zen Buddhism maintain that there is a universal path to enlightenment- a meditative state of mindfulness and presence- that connects all living things to each other.

Diversity connects us through rich traditions, distinct cultures and fascinating stories to share. The collective social consciousness tends to neglect the ties that bind us in favor of the differences that tear us apart. Melting pots help us to stay connected while gentrification can foster ignorance. The South Carolina Lowcountry is no exception. Much of what we know and love about the Lowcountry, from the architecture to the plantations, dialect and cuisine, can be traced back to our Caribbean connection, yet for those of us who live and work here the story gets lost amid strip malls, franchises and cookie cutter communities.

Back in 1670 the first group of planters and slaves set sail from Speightstown in Northern Barbados, landing at Albemarle Point on the Ashley River, where the British colony of Charles Towne was settled. With its haunting beautiful coastline, soothing balmy breezes, streets dripping with lush tropical foliage, classic single homes representing all the colors of the rainbow, and the Gullah dialect- a derivative of West Africa- it is impossible to deny that the heart and soul of the Caribbean still runs through Charleston’s veins.

Names like Gibbes, Yeamans, Drayton and Middleton are reminiscent of Charleston’s Caribbean roots, as Charleston was settled in part by English- born Barbadian planters and enslaved Africans. They brought to us the plantation system which became the lifeblood of Charleston’s economy until the end of the Civil War. Thomas Drayton and his wife Ann left Barbados for Charles Towne and established Magnolia Plantation in 1679. The Drayton family owned the property for the next 300 years. At the beginning of the American Revolution in 1775, Magnolia was at the height of rice planting season. Several Drayton sons became involved in the war, with William Henry Drayton taking a leading role. In 1779, the plantation was ransacked by British General Augustine Prevost. John Drayton fled the plantation with his family, but suffered a seizure and died while crossing the Cooper River.

When my husband and I visited Peaches and Quiet on the Southern tip of Barbados several months ago, the Carolina-Barbados connection was readily apparent. On our departure day, we felt sorry for a family from Toronto as they braced themselves for a return to frigid temperature, while the only icy blast that awaited us was the one inside our own freezer. Perhaps it was the warm breezes drifting off the sea, the tropical flowers and emerald palms scattered like rainbow sprinkles, or the sense of tranquility enveloping my body and soul, that reminded me of Charleston. We owe much of this gift to the early settlers from Barbados and their descendents who fought for so hard for our independence, braving the elements to weave a beautiful new tapestry from the original threads of their lush island home.

Peaches and Quiet is charming and unassuming. British owners Adrian and Margaret Loveridge have created a tropical sanctuary where simple elegance meets natural beauty and their story is one of passion and determination. After 42 years working in the tourism industry, Adrian was in bad need of a holiday. He surprised his wife Margaret with a three week trip to Barbados, where the couple rented a car and explored the island. When they stepped onto the grounds of Peaches of Quiet, a divine spark was ignited. They both knew that despite the dilapidated condition of the hotel, the place held a special kind of magic. Adrian explained how the incredible view and whitewashed Moorish architecture spoke to him, compelling him to return the next day. “I believe that buildings have souls,” Adrian stated. After spending several days inside his tropical oasis where balmy breezes never quit and the turquoise sea crashes against the craggy edges of coral and sandstone cliffs rising straight out of the sea, I understood precisely what he meant.

Within four days after first setting foot on the premises, the couple decided to purchase the hotel. Margaret arranged to sell her home in England while a British bank promised to finance 90% of the purchase, but subsequently pulled out of the deal. Many people would have called it quits right about here. Instead, a couple who never even considered purchasing a hotel, felt so drawn to the place that they could not imagine turning back. Adrian approached 27 different banks pleading for assistance before finding relief in the most unlikely of places- a former business rival turned friend who offered to float him the money. Now twenty years later, they continue to face a multitude of challenges and obstacles, from a scarcity of materials and supplies on the island (Adrian admits he would do anything for a Home Depot) to cultural differences in work ethic.

Peaches and Quiet was built in 1973, when a wealthy Canadian hired English architect Ian Morrison to build the hotel of his dreams. When the original owner fell into severe debt, an old sea captain acquired the place on auction. Legend has it that the hotel housed the first gambling room, where the Prime Minister of Barbados, Tom Adams, enjoyed the camaraderie of gentlemen and a constant supply of beautiful women. By the time Adrian and Margaret acquired the hotel in 1988, the hotel’s 17 buildings spread over 4.5 acres were in horrible disrepair. Every roof had to be replaced, the pool required refurbishing and, according to Margaret, the place was “Overgrown and unloved.” Despite the challenges, the couple shared a joint vision and devoted their lives to turning their vision into a reality.

Margaret and Adrian’s service philosophy is reflected in their honesty bar, where guests help themselves to unlimited rum punch, beer, water and sodas throughout the day while keeping track of their own tab. This is by far the best value on the island, as Adrian and Margaret live by the philosophy of under promise and over deliver. The 22 guest suites are simple, clean and comfortable. The buffet style breakfast is simple and satisfying if you don’t mind sharing with the gorgeous birds and friendly resident cats roaming the premises. The dinners are low key, leisurely and romantic. We dined in the soft glow of candlelight with a blanket of twinkling stars above. Margaret promotes a healthy wine list that will satisfy even the most selective of connoisseurs. The dinner menu changes daily with a choice of meat or seafood. The majority of ingredients are locally grown, the sauces are savory and light, and the fresh baked breads are well worth the extra carbohydrates.

Sitting with Margaret as I listened to her story, I wished we could extend our visit just a little longer. “We put everything we have into this property, and despite the challenges, I still believe in the beauty of this place.” Margaret looked off into the distance, as if reflecting back on the past twenty years of her life, which in many ways were as jagged and unforgiving as the stone cliffs that surrounded the edge of the sea before us. With acres of lemon, lime, and grapefruit trees, multitudes of tropical flowers and sounds of the crashing surf, I could begin to see this place through Margaret’s eyes and connect with her vision. “We are not here to make a lot of money,” Margaret stated. “As long as we have a roof over our head, good food in our tummy and a glass of wine in our hands, we are happy, and we believe the same is true for our guests.”

I thought of my own home back in Charleston and the shared history of the South Carolina Lowcountry and this lush Caribbean island. I guess that is all any of us really need, I thought to myself- delicious food, the ocean breeze and plenty of good wine. We are all connected in more ways than we even realize, and we have so many stories to share. I soaked in the beauty of my surroundings for one final moment and prepared for a long journey back across the sea.

Dementia Patients’ Safety in Nursing Care Homes

Nursing care homes are places where the old people are can stay safe and protected from the world. This is a place where their safety is the top priority. Not only the healthy people are allowed to stay there in fact patients with some serious problems like dementia are also allowed to stay there and proper care is taken.

This is the place where people with dementia can have the opportunity to live in a home like environment with trained and expert staff who will look after them all the time.

Choosing a care home for the dementia patient

Generally, in a few cases, the primary step towards choosing and shortlisting the care homes for a person suffering from dementia would be to get a proper assessment from the social service authority. This would make things transparent to you and clear all your doubts if you have any about a particular place.

The social service authorities would be able to provide valuable information about various care homes and can also tell you whether so and so care home is suitable for a patent suffering from dementia or not.

At times, the person suffering from dementia is not likely to be eligible for the financial aid, but still it can be worth a try involving the social service authorities into the matter. That is because the information which they provide is very helpful in making the long term decisions about which care home to choose.

There are other options too which you need to consider before deciding the most important decision for a dementia patient.

Location of the place

The location of the care home is very important for the dementia patients. You might not want the place to be too far from the place where you stay as that would make it more difficult for you to visit your loved ones on a regular basis. That too if your loved one is in such a condition it is mandatory for you to visit them on a regular basis.

You would also check the other factors like leisure, shops nearby and the educational facility. You would also want your dear one to stay in a place which is peaceful and less noisy.

Other facilities

You would also check the facilities the nursing care homes have to offer. You need to see whether they provide the special needs which your loved ones need. Also, what is their contact with the community?

You need to keep interrogating the people until and unless you are not deeply satisfied and assured from the answers which you get. You need to know how well the people would take care of the patient suffering from dementia and how well will they make sure that he or she is safe from any possible dangers.

Hence, for the dementia patients you should look for nursing care homes that not only take proper care of your loved ones but also help them stay independent.

Fire Exit Signs for Museums

Museums are institutions that collect and exhibit rare and valuable paintings, artefacts and other historical items and which are visited by thousands of people each year. Because of this all precautions need to be taken to avoid a fire breaking out and if it does, to minimise danger to the art collections and life. As fires normally generate a state of panic and people present rush in any direction, large and clear fire exit signs need to be placed throughout the premises.

Some of the important signs displayed in museums are:

· Do not use elevators

· Evacuate – fire is out of control

· Follow Exit signs

· Walk at normal pace

· Wait outside the building till All Clear signal is given

People present when a fire erupts inside the museum and who make it safely outdoors, once the fire is under control they should help by reporting any missing persons.

All public buildings such as museums etc have to have emergency exits which lead to a safe place as directly as possible. Such escape routes should also be free from any obstructions. Fire exit doors should open easily in an outward direction, and the escape route should be well lit. If the lighting is poor, emergency lights should be provided so that any safety equipment to be used can be located easily. Some public buildings have fire doors as well as fire exit doors. The difference is that fire doors are designed to compartmentalise sections of the building if a fire erupts. They may not necessarily have a fire escape route. Whereas fire exit doors are made to allow people to make a fast and safe exit from the building in case of a fire breaking out.

Besides having the above fire exit signs and fire exit doors in place, management of public buildings such as museums etc. have to ensure that regular maintenance of all emergency exit hardware is done. They need to keep a check on exit device function, security of fixings, and component condition. Another important mechanism that could prove helpful if there is a fire situation is a hold-back device. This device helps the exit doors to be kept in open position letting people through easily. Special panic bars fixed on fire escape doors when pressed, help to release the door and help people to escape freely. There are also push bars which in normal circumstances are kept locked to prevent unauthorised access. Pressing on the push bar releases both the above mechanisms.

Many governments have laws stipulating that escape routes in public buildings need to have specific dimensions with regard to width. The width will depend on the number of people who might have to use such escape routes. If a building has more than one storey, people on the upper stories might not have access to an escape route. So escape routes on the lower level have to be large enough to accommodate several people at a time, and such routes should be clearly marked with fire exit signs.