September 1, 2012 is the Elevator Statute Deadline for Elevator Firefighters Emergency Operation Feature
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 25, 2012
AUSTIN - Every day millions of people use elevators without incident. In fact, elevators are one of the safest means of transportation because of their many safety features.
As of September 1, 2012, ALL passenger and freight elevators in Texas with a travel distance of 25 feet or more above or below the building’s main floor must meet the safety standard requirements set out in Chapter 754 [754.014(f)] of the Health and Safety Code. This includes but isn't limited to the firefighters emergency operation safety feature.
The absence of this feature puts passengers at risk of being killed or seriously injured by fire if an elevator opens its doors at a floor where a fire is in progress in the building. Additionally, its absence requires firefighters to carry themselves and heavy equipment up flights of stairs to gain access to the fire floors and can also hinder the safe and orderly evacuation of occupants from a burning building.
Firefighters emergency operation provides a significant public safety enhancement to elevators and has been required by law on all new and most existing elevators since September 1, 1993.
IMMEDIATE REMOVAL FROM SERVICE
The law requires all elevators to have the Texas firefighters emergency operation safety feature in place by September 1, 2012. Elevators found on or after this date to not be in compliance with the law will immediately be removed from service.
The removed elevator will not be placed back into service until it is inspected and verified to be in compliance with the required firefighters emergency operation feature by a registered elevator inspector.
Late = Unsafe
When there is a fire in the building, the firefighters emergency operation function can save precious time and lives. This isn’t a new requirement; on September 1, 2012, building owners have had nineteen (19) years to come into compliance with the law.