People's behaviour in building emergencies can be considered at two levels: (a)sequences of actions and goals (b) path of movement through a building. Research of fires to date has not physically 'situated' the actions, making it difficult for the findings to be translated into design recommendations. Efforts to map people's movements on architectural plans have been illustrative examples and not recorded the distances covered. Research on high-rise building evacuations has monitored people's flow of movement down stairs, but has not examined the pattern of movement and actions prior to reaching a staircase. Despite the emphasis on 'travel distance' to exits in building codes, very little is known at all about the distances people move 'in fires.