Building Codes & Standards: Photoluminescence
LL-26 Approved Products: photoluminescent paints & markings

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LL-26 Products, MEA Approval & Photoluminescent Paints

What Are LL-26 Products, And Why Should I Care?
The September 11th terrorist attacks and subsequent collapse of the World Trade Center (WTC) Twin Towers and building number 7 WTC were a national tragedy that had an enormous impact on New York City, more than the obvious physical damage.

Before 9/11, New York City was commonly acknowledged to have one of the most stringent building codes in the United States. The aftermath of these attacks caused the NYC Building Department to rethink their codes in relation to high-rise building safety. The lessons learned from the tragedy had a practical application for improvements to their building safety codes. To that end, the New York City Department of Buildings convened the World Trade Center Building Code Task Force (Task Force) to review current building design, construction and operating requirements for high rise office buildings, and to determine if modifications were needed to enhance public safety.

The Task Force brought together a broad coalition of affected groups, including experts from both the public and private sectors (government, academia and industry) and survivors of the attacks. It was this deliberate consensus building that ensured the success of the Task Force. In February 2003, the Task Force released its findings recommending changes to the way that high-rise office buildings are designed and how they function during an extreme event.

The Task Force focused its efforts in four main areas:
  • structural strength;
  • evacuation and egress;
  • fire protection;
  • mechanical systems;
The resulting recommendations serve public safety and are realistic and practicable. Thirteen of these recommendations were signed into law on June 24, 2004 by Local Law 26 of 2004, which amended the New York City Building Code and Fire Prevention Code.

One component of Local Law 26 or 2004 mandates the retroactive installation of photoluminescent signs and markings in high rise office buildings on or before July 1, 2006, and requires that the Commissioner of Buildings adopt a reference standard establishing the technical standards for the installation and placement of the standards on of before January 1, 2006.

This proposed Reference Standard RS 6-1 and 6-1A establish the technical standards for the installation of photoluminescent building signs in compliance with Local Law 26 of 2004.

One of the very few industrial photoluminescent paint suppliers that does meet all these requirements in it's products is Kryptaglow.

This means that it's paints comply with and have been tested for the following:
LL-26 Reference Standard 6-1a : Mandatory Certification Of Photoluminescent Materials & Paints
Due to LL-26 no photoluminescent materials and paints that have not been certified can be applied within your building (!). All photoluminescent paints have to be certified for:
  • a minimum brightness rating of BR 30-7-5
  • a maximum toxicity level
  • a maximum radioactivity level
  • a minimum fire safety level
  • washability
  • resistance to UV degradation and weather
Certification can only be approved by the NYC Department of Buildings'Material and Equipment Acceptance Division (or: MEA). Photoluminescent paints and products that have not been MEA approved can not be installed (!).

Local Law 26 (LL26) And LL26 Products Or: MEA Approved Products:
Photoluminescent paints and other products that comply with Local Law 26: "LL26 Products", "LL-26 Products" or "LL26 Approved Products" exist in the sense that these terms are used in the industry to indicate compliance. Technically speaking however, a better term for such products would be: "MEA Certified" since LL-26 implies the mandatory certification of all photoluminescent paints and materials used in NYC buildings by the Materials, Equipment and Acceptance (MEA) Division of the New York City Building Commission. When selecting a paint for photoluminescent or phosphorescent safety markings, one should take all the stipulations of LL-26 into consideration. For more details, visit the NYC government site regarding: LL-26 Reference Standards 6-1 and 6-1 a.
More about building codes and standards in relation to photoluminescent paints & markings