I do not know what about you, but I have my favorite supermarket where I am a steady client. I like everything in this supermarket from productsí quality, prices, and services to their location on the shelves.
One day enjoying my shopping I suddenly saw an evacuation plan and my brain started to work actively. As I remembered there were three emergency exits in the shopping area (pay attention to such kind of things because of professional interest), but in case of emergency, in accordance with the plan all customers were supposed to go through cash desks. Taking into account that cash desks are designed for one personís passing and not for a crowd in case of emergency there could be a jam. I looked up to evacuation route signs and they were
sending me in the same direction too the central exit. From my experience I may say that in such case the main responsibility and load will be on supermarketís employees, as they will need to manage evacuation and not allow it to grow to a panic.
I am not used to rely on others in issues connected to the life and health so I left the official plan for extreme case. I decided to have a walk around and identify the best emergency escape for my family.
This supermarket has kitchen and bakery and that will be the highest risk area. There is an emergency exit just by the kitchen, but it was chained and blocked by racks for bakery. Yes, both these blockages are illegal, but that is our reality and it should be taken into account.
The second emergency exit was locked by a plastic clamp and could be cut off by pieces of broken glass that would lie about, as it is alcoholic beverages section. Although this variant of evacuation could be applicable I had two deterrents. The first one ‚Äď it was section of alcoholic beverages and that would not be the best option in case of fire to be surrounded by flammable materials. The second one was our reality, as it would be pity to spend time on cutting off the clamp and the exit will be blocked from the other side. This door as the previous one did not have any inspection window.
I went to check the third emergency exit, which is, located close to the central one, but before the cash desks. As two previous it was locked by small and light flower shelves. Doors of this exit were from the transparent glass and had push bars from inside. These were the doors that I choose as an exit for my family in case of emergency. The last thing that I needed to do was to identify areas, which I would need to avoid, I added to them sections with alcoholic beverages, cleaning materials, oils and products for BBQ. Just in case, as an alternative emergency route I choose escape through the cash desks and small cafe outside, but not through the central exit.
I shared my ideas to my family we discussed clarified agreed an outside meeting point and approved emergency plan.
Probably for someone it is too much, but I do not like to think, ĎWhat I could do in a different way?í Taking into account that my family and me are going to this supermarket every week this kind of things give me belief and confidence that we did everything to come home together.