Elevator World India | 4th Quarter 2019
Speaking to building owners, building managers and society office-bearers about contracts and accidents by Rajnikant Lad
In case of any lift accident in which death is reported, the lift service provider and society office bearer may come across numerous problems and have to face a lot of hardship until the accident investigation concludes. Even then, those involved are not tension-free until the court case ends.
The service provider, being in the same field, knows the process involved in such cases well and will be well-equipped with required resources.
The lift is used by the person who suffers the accident and is maintained by the lift service provider. The accident could be caused by reasons such as component failure, safety bypass and improper use or rescue procedure. It can be labelled either technical failure or negligence. There is no direct role of the society office bearer in any accident case, except for a few things like service provider recommendations not followed, valid service contract, proper instructions display, etc. However, as the custodian of the building, the building manager is answerable to a lot of things.
If you are an office-bearer, especially chairman/secretary, of any housing society, you will be put through a lot of trouble/mental harassment after an accident in the lift until the conclusion of any investigations. Even after the investigation is over, there may be legal proceedings in which the presence of the chairman/secretary is required until the case is concluded.
Considering that society office bearers’ posts are honorary, they should be kept aware of important procedures and precautions, which can be of great help to them in such accident cases. If they know the procedure, responsibilities and contractual obligations and keep good records, they can save themselves from post-accident harassments/liabilities.
Let us study and note important activities involved and the precautions one has to take in handling elevator contract and accident situations:
Before finalizing a lift service contract, ensure the service provider has a valid (for the
However, as the custodian of the building, the building manager is answerable to a lot of things.
duration of the service contract period) lift service contractor license issued by the inspector of lifts office/appropriate government authority. The license should include details of the lifts in the building. Itis also important to ensure all lifts in the building have operating license issued by the local lift inspector/appropriate government authority.
During the service contract period, ensure the lift is inspected by a lift inspector once a year and that a health report of the lift(s)is issued. The service provider should also carry out a yearly safety check and overall equipment audit, for which a copy should also be provided. Ensure that the recommendations/requirements made by the service provider during its service visit are fulfilled in a timely manner, and keep all previous service reports signed by the service provider. Finally, ensure that the service
Finally, ensure that the service provider gives safety training to as many users as possible at least once a year.the provider gives safety training to as many users as possible at
Least once a year.
- During routine service, ensure the technician coming for lift
- servicing has a valid wireman license and proper personal protective equipment. Also, ensure a valid service contract
- is in effect with the service provider, and keep records of the monthly service report signed by the service provider. Witness all safety checks.
- In a new installation, ensure that the lift operating license is placed in the lift cabin.
- In up-gradation/modification, confirm with the service provider whether the work needs lift inspector approval. If so, get the required permission before taking up the work and get final approval on work completion.
- In case of an accident, contact the service provider and follow its advice. Do not tamper with any physical evidence, follow the proper rescue procedure as recommended by the service provider and inform police and the lift inspectorate. Keep records of all persons visiting the accident location.
- Safeguarding points: get third-party insurance for the lift, keep a trained lift technician on hand to operate the lift, provide important contact numbers inside the elevator cabin, ensure the intercom is in working order and ensure the emergency light/ alarm are in working order and working on DC supply (not
- on single-phase AC supply). Keep records of lift technicians/ engineers visiting the site, including in and out times, with briefs of actions are taken/work done.
- Do not tamper with any physical evidence, follow the proper rescue procedure as recommended by the service provider and inform police and the lift inspectorate.
- This information will help minimize problems and aid in coming out of any liability or punishment arising from any lift accident.
Rajnikant Lad is a Mumbai-based chartered engineer and consultant with more than 30 years’ experience in the elevator industry. He is the author of a number of articles and publications on vertical transportation.
Written by : Rajnikant Lad
Founder Elevator Auditor | www.elevatorauditor.com
Watch Mr Lad and business leaders around the world talking about Elevator Safety and market trends on his our YouTube Channel : YouTube.
Connect us on Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn