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What is your departments policy, SOP, SOG, surrounding elevator emergencies with an occupant(s) trapped within who has no medical emergency. They are simply trapped in a malfunctioning elevator.

Does your department rescue occupants out of the elevator cars or do you stand with your hands in your pockets and wait for a elevator repairman?

If you rescue the occupant(s), what do you do with the elevators after you rescue the occupant(s)? 

Do you contact the building Managment? Do you deem the elevator(s) out of service? Do you shut the power? If power can't be shut and no Managment is on the scene do you place caution tape at every point of entry on every floor indicating the elevator is out of service?

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We get them out safely. Elevator keys first, up through hatches if the situation deems it. We don't wait for repairman but we contact building Management and place the elevator O.O.S. We shut off power if possible and secure the elevator using tape at the least or PD if it's needed. Of course at every entrance point. 

Hi.  We have the following procedure:

1. Attempt to recall elevator with the FF recall facility

2. Determine level that elevator is stuck by observation inside shaft (open doors with elevator keys at estimated point based on info at scene)

3. Open landing doors above car location (the higher of the two levels if the car is between floors)

4. Activate emergency stop button on roof of car and open car doors.

5. Communicate with occupant and building maintenance to determine whether immediate removal is required, or whether an elevator service agent will be available in a reasonable time frame to move the car into an easier position for removal.  If not, we remove.

We do not move the position of the car.  We were originally trained to release the brake in the lift motor room to bring the car to the nearest landing, but with advancements in lift technology and upon the advice of experts we don't go down that track anymore.

We require at least two points of isolation before removing an occupant.  Opening the doors is 1 of them, and the other is acuating the emergency stop button which is located on the car roof, inside the shaft on the lowest level, or in the lift motor room.

Upon completion we close doors and hand over to building agent.  The elevator will be out of service as we will not reset the emergency button so it won't be possible for users to call the car and open the landing doors.  It will be the building agent's responsibility to secure the area if required.  We will assist in any way possible.

Would be interesting to hear if procedures are similar around the world.


In our area, we have many high rise low income residencies and we have become quite accustomed to elevator work. At any given time we always have a building or two with their elevators out of service. Our tactics are slightly different and even a little unorthodox but we have found that this is what works best for us and our residents. 

First, we respond non emergency unless there are reports of a medical emergency. We also request Dispatch to contact the building maintenance and have them meet us at the scene. Upon arrival to the building, one member immediately goes to the elevator equipment room(which can be either on the roof or first floor) with a key that was retrieved by the Driver/Operator from the Knox Box.  The Officer, Driver/Operator, and other members go to the floors between which the elevator is stuck and will make verbal contact with the victim and get an assessment and a priority for extraction.  If they can not call the elevator to one of the floors then the Officer will advise via radio which elevator is to be shut down and the member in the elevator equipment room will immediately secure the power at the main breaker then lock and tag it out of service with a tag that has our Dispatch's phone number.  We also manufactured an elevator tool that is a modified broom handle with a coat hanger hook on the one end.  This comes into play when we can get the another elevator alongside the one that is stuck.  We will use the elevator keys to open up the outer doors and reach across to the stuck elevator to release the pulley holding the doors closed.  This works 99% of the time.

If the person(s) in the stuck elevator are in some sort of medical distress, we will remove them via a ground ladder or the elevator hatch if necessary.  We never leave a person stuck in the elevators. When the elevator repair company arrives to repair the elevator, the building maintenance contacts Dispatch and then we respond non emergency back to the scene and unlock the power for the elevator company.

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