Elevator Safety and Licensing Technical Memoranda - 12-01-11 Door Restrictors

Elevator Door Restrictors Required Statewide

On December 1, 2011, all passenger elevators in Texas must meet the safety standard requirements set out in Chapter 754 of the Health and Safety Code.

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, including door restrictors.

Door restrictors are installed for one primary reason - to keep people from opening the doors of a stalled elevator car and attempting to crawl out. Door restrictors prevent the car doors from opening more than four inches when an elevator is not within its “landing zone,” which is usually 18 inches above or below the floor landing.

In December 2006, a 75 year-old Houston resident slipped and fell 12 stories while trying to climb out of an elevator that became stuck between floors at the condominium where he lived. The man, with the help of a condominium employee, had assisted two of his grandchildren out of the partially open elevator doors, but as he attempted to climb out he slipped and fell into the gap between the elevator and the floor.

Any passenger elevator in Texas without door restrictors or found to have non-working door restrictors after December 1, 2011, will immediately be removed from service. The elevator will not be placed back into service until it is inspected and has all required safety features verified by a registered elevator inspector.

When an elevator stops between floors, the safest place for passengers is in the elevator until trained personnel arrive to remove them. Door restrictors ensure that elevator doors will remain closed, keeping passengers safe, until appropriate action can be taken by qualified personnel.
Owners of elevators or related equipment in Texas must obtain an inspection every 12 months and submit the inspection report to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation in order to obtain a certificate of compliance. The certificate is required to be posted:

  • Inside the elevator car, or;
  • Outside the elevator car within 10 feet of the elevator call button; or
  • In a common area lobby or hallway location that is accessible to the public without assistance or permission during the hours the any elevator is in operation.