While I’m certain that there will be more articles to follow covering this terrible accident in New York this latest one concerns me greatly. Written by the NY Daily Times, you can read this article in its entirety by clicking the following link. It’s important to note that this blog post is my own opinion and I’m simply asking questions based on what was mentioned in the article in the link above. The article may not have all the correct facts as I may not as well. I also am not speculating as to what happening but merely pointing out what is covered in this article. There are two paragraphs that are alarming to me.
The first notes that there were a history of defects, “unsatisfactory” inspections and hazardous code violations, but officials Wednesday insisted recent issues involved matters unrelated to safety. This taken verbatim from the article has me a bit puzzled. I’m not an elevator inspector but how is a hazardous code violation unrelated to safety?
Let’s take a look at how haz-ard-ous is defined; 1. Full of risk, perilous, risky 2. Dependent on chance. Synonyms as outlined by the dictionary; 1. dangerous, unsafe 2. chancy, uncertain, risky speculative.
They had me at dangerous. So again I ask, how is hazardous not related to safety? I would assume that any violation should be related to safety.
The next paragraph was equally concerning to me. Of the 56 violations noted since 1999, 34 of them were for “failure to maintain elevators”. I’m not sure what code the City of New York is under but the A17.1 – 2007 copy that I’ve got has a special section that deals with elevator maintenance in its entirety and it can be found under 8.6. Maintenance, Repair and Replacement. Get a copy of the code book through ASME and take a look through the requirements as outlined by the code. As far as I’m aware elevators and escalators are machines that must be maintained and 8.6 makes it pretty easy to figure out the steps that need to be taken to do so. I'm pretty sure that even the City of New York requires that 8.6 is followed.
Not that I'm pointing the finger at anyone or speculating what happened, investigators right now are figuring that out. I can assure you that when they do, it's not going to be pretty.