Why do we need a refuge chamber?


The exploitation of the underground environment is a real challenge for the future: extraction of raw materials, burying of transport infrastructures and networks, etc., the opportunities it offers in the face of the constant growth of the world’s population are numerous.

However, the constraints linked to these underground spaces are numerous and well known, starting with the actors who build them, such as construction and mining companies. One of the essential safety issues for operators in this very special environment is their evacuation in the event of a disaster.


Whether it is a tunnel digging site or an infrastructure such as a station of the future Grand Paris Express, or the exploitation of ore on a mining site, the risk of disaster is real: landslide preventing the return to the surface, fire blocking the evacuation and spreading hot and toxic fumes throughout the underground site, to name just two examples. Thus, the need to identify scenarios for sheltering personnel with the help of specific studies is essential.


These studies often highlight the impossibility of evacuating a work site through an emergency exit, since the very nature of an underground work site is to be without multiple access. The implementation of an emergency and rescue chamber therefore appears to be the only viable solution to ensure the safety of operators. These protective devices provide essential shelter because they ensure, for a pre-determined period of time, the supply of breathing air to a number of operators, again pre-determined.

With this equipment, the operators can then find a safe place to wait for the end of the disaster and/or the arrival of the rescue team that will then bring them back to the surface.

Underground refuge chambers solutions

The standard range complies with ITA and EN standards, offering the necessary personnel safety features.

The narrow range has a modular design to integrate the refuge into small spaces such as narrow galleries and veins.

The compact range is characterised by refuges that are easily movable and can accommodate a limited number of people.

The customizable range adapts to your specific needs, for example to be integrated on specific equipment (tunnel boring machine or rescue vehicle).

In short, if it is impossible to evacuate a digging site in an emergency, the refuge chamber is the only valid alternative to ensure the safety of the personnel. Thanks to their modular design and the adaptability of the equipment to the specific needs of a site, they offer a viable solution that can be used throughout the duration of a work site.

Generally mobile, they accompany the operators as close as possible to the risks and facilitate the implementation of the general evacuation plan.