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Old 03-24-2019, 08:49 PM   #1
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Thumbs up Changing escape window to escape door?

Is this the right place to post a request for a MOD that I would like to install? If so....

I want to replace the fire escape window in my Discovery bedroom with a fire escape DOOR. Even if I could get both my legs high enough (almost 4 feet high) to put them out the window, it's a 7 1/2' drop to the ground. Have you tested to see if you can safely get out of your RV in 20 seconds through the fire escape window?

I am hoping that someone installed a trailer door in place of the window, or similar, in the bedroom as a fire emergency exit, perhaps with a drop down ladder. If so, please tell us (with pictures) about your MOD!
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Old 03-25-2019, 07:27 AM   #2
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I don't have any knowledge on how to do such a task but but you had better get some engineering plans for you coach to make sure you don't mess with structural soundness of the side walls.

When I purchased my 2016 Newmar I saw the door that Newmar installed right from the factory and asked the salesman about it. He indicated that he had heard that starting in a few years, all manufacturers were going to be required to have an escape door on all models.
Not sure if this is true as getting a straight answer from a vehicle salesman is almost impossible.
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Old 03-25-2019, 05:55 PM   #3
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There is a Newmar video showing the fire escape door and that is part of the reason I wanted to find out if anyone has looked into retrofitting a door for this purpose.

In my coach, it looks like I could put a 'tiny house' or 'smurf' size door (maybe 2' x 3') below the escape window with a hand bar mounted between the window and the door. If so, one could sit on the floor, slide your legs out the open door, grab the handle and slip out of the burning coach in less than 10 seconds. The total drop would be slightly further than the length of a man's legs.

Even better, I wish the RV manufacturers would offer a retrofit emergency door installation service.
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Old 03-25-2019, 06:02 PM   #4
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it's a 7 1/2' drop to the ground.
Not when the coach is laying on its side.
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Old 03-25-2019, 07:05 PM   #5
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I have not actually left my coach through the emergency egress window but I think I could do it. I believe I could lean out the window and grab my roof ladder and pull myself up and out. It wouldnít be simple but with fire licking at the door and a smoke alarm blaring in my ear I think Iíd manage! My RV is a Storm though and not a Discovery.
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Old 03-26-2019, 07:27 AM   #6
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We looked at having a door put in our 40X which would have included the window. We even talked to a shop that said they could do it. After looking at the cost we decided to buy an extendable ladder that we keep under the window and can drop it out if we need to make an escape.
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Old 03-26-2019, 11:52 AM   #7
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A telescoping emergency escape ladder would be a lot cheaper.
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Old 03-28-2019, 08:48 AM   #8
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For those not familiar with the Discovery 40X emergency exit window, the opening is all of 21" wide and 20" tall. The emergency window in the bedroom has remained the same size I think from at least 2007 to 2014, perhaps earlier & later too.

Not practical given the size of a great many of us, or the age of most of us. I tried to test mine once and, while I probably could have squeezed thru with an extraordinary effort, I would have injured myself doing so (not to mention what the drop to the ground would do to me!). I'm happy Newmar is installing proper emergency exits and hope other manufacturers will do the same.

I would like to see a kit or other upgrade made available to convert one of the 40X's hallway windows into an emergency exit. As Frank knows, I posted some thoughts on the Discovery club forum, but nobody had any suggestions. Perhaps someone here knows of something. I'll repost some of it here:

The hallway windows are more than 2í wide and 4í wideóeven I could fit thru without touching! And only 18Ē off the floor. Is there perhaps a way to alter the existing window frame into a one that could be side-hinged or even just pop out for an emergency exit?
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Old 03-28-2019, 09:08 AM   #9
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Quote:
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Not when the coach is laying on its side.
tyfryman--
The coach is not going to be on its side if you are in your bedroom--at least I hope you are not there when your coach tips over! You are thinking of an accident.

Most fires not from accidents start in the galley, most notoriously in Norcold refrigerators. Such a fire would likely be impossible to get around to the front door on a diesel pusher.

Engine fires nearly always occur when driving. The recently-reported inverter fire is scary, but so far as I've heard it seems to be a one-off. Battery fires have also been reported, but they too are uncommon. In these cases, if noted soon enough, one could hopefully exit the bedroom to the front of the coach to escape.
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Old 03-28-2019, 10:47 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank Miller View Post
Is this the right place to post a request for a MOD that I would like to install? If so....

I want to replace the fire escape window in my Discovery bedroom with a fire escape DOOR. Even if I could get both my legs high enough (almost 4 feet high) to put them out the window, it's a 7 1/2' drop to the ground. Have you tested to see if you can safely get out of your RV in 20 seconds through the fire escape window?

I am hoping that someone installed a trailer door in place of the window, or similar, in the bedroom as a fire emergency exit, perhaps with a drop down ladder. If so, please tell us (with pictures) about your MOD!
The day we got ours, I looked at the window behind the toilet, in the rear bath and wondered why it wasn't a door instead. Then I started seeing them in the newer coaches and looked to be with a collapsible ladder fastened on the inside of the door and with the door latching itself at 90 degrees. This says that the structural frame built for the door and the hinges themselves, had better be super strong.
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Old 03-28-2019, 04:23 PM   #11
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Unlike Al's Discovery where the bottom of the window is relatively close to the floor, mine is several feet up on the inside and a 7 1/2 foot drop on the outside.

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A 'Smurf' door below that window might work but as it is, my wife and I can't get high enough to get out the window and if we did, the drop on the outside would surely break some bones.

I am hoping that someone has created a door that can be fitted below the window at the floor level to make an emergency exit possible.
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Old 04-04-2019, 02:33 PM   #12
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My 40' Discovery has a "escape" window behind the toilet in the rear bathroom. It totally useless. I couldn't get my second leg out. Too high off the ground. Head first, no way.
Bought a escape ladder. They are made for houses with thick walls. RV walls are 2-3". Wouldn't hook up at all. Take too long to set up in emergency.
Finally decided we might get out a 2'◊3' window in bedroom, would have to destroy opening mechanisms, put towels or bedspread hanging out.
Look before you have to find out.
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Old 04-04-2019, 02:45 PM   #13
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My escape window is above my toilet so I can just step on the toilet, hopefully with the seat down lol lol lol, and climb out the window. Itís the drop to the ground I am worried about but itís beats burning up. Frank Miller, try keeping a step stool under your window to help in getting out.
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Old 04-05-2019, 10:22 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiesta48 View Post
My 40' Discovery has a "escape" window behind the toilet in the rear bathroom. It totally useless. I couldn't get my second leg out. Too high off the ground. Head first, no way.
Bought a escape ladder. They are made for houses with thick walls. RV walls are 2-3". Wouldn't hook up at all. Take too long to set up in emergency.
Finally decided we might get out a 2'◊3' window in bedroom, would have to destroy opening mechanisms, put towels or bedspread hanging out.
Look before you have to find out.
As said, that window behind the toilet, needs to be a door, like many newer models.
Can't get out ours anyway and may not want to be back there, with an engine fire anyway.
We do have a large escape window in the BR that's top hinged and pushes open with just two locking handles. This need to be exercised often, to keep it from sticking. Covers on the bed, can be slid over the opening very quickly, too. Can't say much for the long drop to the ground for an elderly couple, however.
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