Technical Articles

What is BS EN 12645:2012?

BS EN 12645:2012 is a technical standard that relates to the lighting industry, specifically addressing the emergency lighting systems used in both public and non-public buildings. This standard provides guidelines for the design, installation, and maintenance of these emergency lighting systems.

The Purpose of BS EN 12645:2012

The primary purpose of BS EN 12645:2012 is to ensure the safety of individuals in case of emergencies, such as power failures or fires. Emergency lighting plays a critical role in these situations by providing illumination that allows people to safely evacuate the building or navigate through it to reach exits or essential equipment. Compliance with this standard helps to minimize risks and protect individuals' lives.

Main Requirements of BS EN 12645:2012

BS EN 12645:2012 sets out several key requirements that emergency lighting systems must meet. These requirements include:

System Design: The standard outlines design principles to ensure that sufficient light is available during emergencies. It specifies minimum illuminance levels and uniformity requirements that emergency lighting systems should achieve.

Power Supply: The standard highlights the need for alternative power sources for emergency lighting, ensuring that the lighting remains functional even if the main power supply fails.

Automatic Operation: BS EN 12645:2012 mandates that emergency lighting should automatically activate when the main power supply is interrupted. It also requires an automatic testing system to check the functionality of the emergency lighting periodically.

Duration: The standard defines the minimum duration for which an emergency lighting system should operate during a power failure or emergency situation. This ensures that individuals have enough time to safely evacuate the premises.

Maintenance: Regular inspections and maintenance of emergency lighting systems are critical to ensure their ongoing functionality. BS EN 12645:2012 provides guidelines for maintenance procedures and recommended intervals between inspections.


BS EN 12645:2012 plays a vital role in ensuring the safety and well-being of individuals during emergencies. By following this standard, building owners, architects, and electricians can create and maintain effective emergency lighting systems that comply with the required regulations. Ultimately, strict adherence to BS EN 12645:2012 helps to protect lives by reducing risks and providing reliable illumination when it is most needed.


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