Elevators are a major investment for a property. According to Taylor Ronnander from OTIS Elevator Company, properties are wise to take appropriate action prior to a major weather event to protect the elevator equipment and prevent shutdowns. Examine your property insurance coverage to see if you are fully covered for a hurricane, including elevators.
Here are other preventative measures Ronnander recommends for elevators.
BEFORE A HURRICANE
- Weather stripping around doors should be checked, and replaced or repaired if necessary.
- An elevator machine room with louvers can be protected from blowing rain by fastening a sheet of plywood to the inside of the ventilation opening. After the storm, this shield should be removed to provide adequate machine-room ventilation.
- Elevator machine-room window can be blown out by strong winds. Fastening sheets of heavy plywood over windows can prevent water damage.
WHEN A HURRICANE IS APPROACHING
- It is recommended to suspend elevator operation during a hurricane even if your building has an emergency generator. This precaution can avoid trapping elevator passengers in the event of a power failure or elevator shutdown. Storm damaged roads may delay service mechanics attempting to respond to an elevator emergency.
- Park all elevators near the center of the hoistway. This will help keep the elevator cars, travelling cables and counterweights form being damaged by water entering the elevator pit.
- Position elevators at the top floor if your building has entrances open to the weather.
- Shut down your elevator system at the mainline disconnect in the machine room. If necessary, you also can shut off the elevators by using the key
switches in the cabs.
AFTER THE STORM IS OFFICIALLY OVER
- Although your elevator equipment may have no apparent water damage, be cautious. Unseen structural damage can cause an emergency shut down if you operate the elevator system before a qualified mechanic inspects it. A call your elevator service provider may be a prudent choice.