There are always news stories about commercial elevator failures in major metropolitan areas. This is certainly true when it comes to the Washington, D.C. Metro system and New York City subway and train terminals. This extends to the deluge of coverage when elevators and lifts are not inspected properly for years at a time. These problems have already been covered extensively in this blog but beg the question: why isn’t more attention given to local areas with residential elevator problems?
Fortunately, some newspapers are looking into elevator problems when they arise, even when it the problem is not inherent in the elevator mechanism. According to the CBC News, one Ottawa, Canada, apartment building found itself without a lift for almost a week:
“About 200 people, including a dozen seniors, were left without elevator service for six days after a water pipe broke in a Bronson Avenue apartment building last week. The two elevators at 175 Bronson Avenue, an 11-storey apartment building near Laurier Avenue, were short-circuited last Thursday at about 1:30 a.m. when water flooded a sixth-floor unit and ran down into the elevator shaft.”
The article says that a water main burst in one woman’s closet, unleashing gallons of water into her apartment for more than two hours. What does this have to do with the elevator failure? The water seeped out of her apartment and into the elevator shaft, causing a circuit to blow and ceasing elevator transport. With the early news that the elevator wouldn’t be fixed for more than two weeks, elderly residents of the building might have been in a precarious situation were it not for neighbors:
“The building’s seniors didn’t want to talk on the record Wednesday, but other residents told CBC News that some of them had missed doctor appointments and were running low on groceries. [Neighbors] pitched in to help.”
All in all, the issue was resolved earlier than originally thought – mechanics found replacement parts to fix the elevators yesterday.