The Importance of Revolving Door Code Compliance


Revolving doors are a great security solution that helps keep building occupants safe and protected. However, they must meet certain code requirements to ensure a safe and effective entrance.

One such requirement is that a revolving door’s wings must collapse or book fold to allow escape during emergencies. In addition, they must have adjacent swinging doors for egress purposes.

Egress Requirements

When disaster strikes, people need to exit a building quickly and easily. This is why modern codes, like those established by ANSI and the International Code Council, include requirements for egress that building owners must follow.

For example, the revolving door code compliance requires to be flanked by side-hinged swinging doors with panic hardware, allowing free egress in an emergency. The revolving doors must also have a built-in collapsing mechanism that allows the door panels to fold against each other. This prevents tailgating and piggybacking, which can occur when multiple persons enter a turnstile simultaneously.

Turnstiles are a common security entrance that works with access control systems to stop unauthorized entry into commercial, retail and government buildings. However, these are only designed to be one of the means of egress in any facility. Hence, the IBC and the National Fire Protection Agency require them to have adjacent swing doors for emergency egress.

Panic Collapsing

Panic collapsing requirements (also called emergency book fold mechanisms) are vital to the building and fire code for revolving doors. These devices allow the revolving door wings to collapse or book folds against each other in an emergency, allowing people to exit the facility.

The Uniform Building Code and most municipalities require these systems. They must also be used with an adjacent manual or automatic swinging door for both egress and handicap access.

Blumcraft patented the first tubular panic device over 50 years ago and continues to lead the industry with innovative design and uncompromising safety standards. Today, we offer a full range of sleek and durable panic hardware to meet all UL 305 4.3 safety requirements. Our curved crossbar ends enhance aesthetics and increase safety, while the D-shaped handle offers comfort and contemporary style. They are also available in various finish options to suit any architectural aesthetic.

Speed Control Devices

After the tragic 1942 fire at the Cocoanut Grove nightclub in Boston, many states began to adopt laws requiring improved safety for revolving doors. One particular requirement is that a swing door be adjacent to revolving doors to allow emergency egress in case of malfunction.

Speed control devices must be installed and lubricated regularly to meet these requirements. These are designed to keep the doors from rotating too quickly and prevent injuries.

Revolving doors can also be outfitted with access control systems, which makes it easy to restrict entry to unauthorized individuals. They can even have energy-saving features that improve efficiency and reduce building emissions, which helps businesses comply with environmental regulations.

Presence Detection Sensors

Presence detection sensors are necessary for a revolving door to be code-compliant. They are required for manual and automatic revolving doors and must be installed to prevent tailgating and piggybacking.

Presence sensors can sense the movement of people’s hands or bodies, unlike motion detectors, which only detect the direction of an arm. These sensors’ sensitivity depends on the manufacturer and will also be influenced by their mounting height.

The presence sensor should be outside the egress path to ensure your revolving door meets code compliance. This will prevent potential interference with the revolving door and ensure that only people authorized to pass through are allowed in. Locating the sensor near “choke-points” in your building, such as stairwells or hallways, can be beneficial. This way, intruders will be forced to travel through the sensor on their way to their destination, making it more difficult to bypass security.