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In commercial and public buildings, the design of emergency lighting systems is governed by a number of authorities, including the National Fire Protection Association (which publishes the National Electrical Code) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Local and state authorities may have additional requirements.
In all cases, it is advisable to work with an expert and design your emergency lighting system to meet all code requirements before it is installed. In many cases, however, building administrators must find economical ways to make up for errors and omissions in an existing design.