How Can I Open An Elevator Door From Outside?

How Can I Open an Elevator Door From Outside_1

Elevators can be opened from the outside.  This is a skill that is needed mostly during rescues. Elevators have brought a lot of convenience and comfort in moving around tall buildings.

You push a button and stand there. This beats using staircases by far. Imagine if you are going to the 50th floor of a building. How long would stairs take to get there?

Elevators also accommodate the needs of people with disabilities. Those that use wheelchairs or are injured can easily access high buildings. There are also some minor issues with elevators.

Needing to repair or if they are stuck will require opening from outside. This is, therefore, a necessary skill that any professional should learn.

Now answering the question,

How can I open an elevator door from outside?

This is done using an elevator drop key. The drop key is used to disengage the door’s locking mechanism.

The key is pushed into the access hole outside the elevator. The end part then drops after it’s in the elevator. The key is then turned to open the door.

Elevator Rescue Operations

Elevators are completely safe to use. But like any other mechanical equipment, they could malfunction. This could cause the elevator to get stuck in between floors with passengers.

In case of this, the following procedure is followed;

1. The stuck passengers should immediately raise the alarm to notify maintenance crews.

The qualified personnel should all report to the scene as fast as possible. It is important to be quick to reduce the time in the elevators. As the passengers stay longer, they get more restless.

2. Once on sight, obtain the building’s lockbox key. In this box, there will be an elevator key. This key is vital in opening the door from outside to access the passengers.

3. Determine the exact position of the stuck car. You would need to know exactly which car is stuck and where it is stuck.

Knowing the car’s position in the hoist way will help you open the closest door. You must avoid opening any wrong doors. This is to avoid getting even more cars stuck in their hoist ways.

4. Make verbal contact with the passengers. Imagine being stuck in an elevator on the 25th floor of a building. How scared would you be? This is why verbal contact is important.

You have to speak to the passengers and assure them that they are safe. You need to explain the situation and tell them it will all be okay soon. If you keep them calm, rescuing them becomes much easier.

Some procedures need someone that is already in the car. Ask them if there is an injured person or fire so that you can call the relevant emergency services. This will help prevent deaths or further accidents.

5. Tell the passengers to try the emergency stop switch. Turning it on the off may restart the elevator. If this doesn’t work, keep calm and offer other solutions.

6. Tell them to try the Door open button. This might trigger the lift to move to the initial destination. If that doesn’t work, activate the phase 1 switch in the lobby.

This will move the elevator down to the lobby. There is a chance that it won’t work. Keep the passengers calm as you try to get around the problem.

7. The last resort is the elevator’s power. Turn it off for about 35 seconds, and then turn it on again.

This is like rebooting a computer by force. If this doesn’t work, the elevator will not move. Get firefighters to get all the passengers safely out of the car. The elevator should then be repaired before use.

What To Do When You Are Stuck In An Elevator

Any elevator system should have regular maintenance. This will help reduce the chances of emergencies caused by malfunctions.

In case you are stuck in an elevator, this is what you are to do;

  • Do not try to force the door open. The door could have an electric current, or you could be in between floors. Opening the door puts everyone at greater risk.
  • Do not try to get out of the car yourself. You don’t know how long you will be in the car. It is best if you don’t waste your strength. It is safe in the elevator.

Trying to get out is dangerous. Even if you manage to get out, you might touch an electric cable and get electrocuted.

You might fall into the hoistway and die. So stay calm and remain in the elevator. Help will come as soon as possible.

  • Use the emergency call button. This will allow you to talk to emergency services. You will feel better knowing that people are trying to help.
  • Respond to the emergency teams when needed. Provide the rescue parties with all the information they ask for.

This will keep them able to help you faster and more effectively.

  • Stay as calm as possible. It is pretty scary being stuck in an elevator, especially if you are cluster phobic.

Even in this situation, try to stay as calm as possible. It would help if you talked to the other passengers. Try to keep each other calm as you wait for help to arrive.

Myths And Facts About Elevators

Many people have wrong understandings about elevators. We will look at the common myths and their facts to clear the air.

Myth:

Elevators are suspended in mid-air by ropes that can easily snap and lead to a free fall.

Fact:

Steel cables support elevators. Each cable is strong enough to hold a fully-loaded car. The chances of the cables snapping are pretty much zero.

There has only been one recorded incident of an elevator cable snapping. This happened when a plane crashed into the Empire state building and cut the cables.

So unless a plane crashes into your office building, you are completely safe.

Myth:

 If you get stuck in an elevator, you should find a way out on your own.

Fact:

Trying to leave the stuck car is probably the most dangerous thing you could do. You should stay calm and remain in the car until you are given instruction.

It is for this reason that most escape hatches open from the outside. They were designed for rescue personnel and not passengers. The rescuers will open the hatch and get you out if the need arises.

Before that happens, stay calm and stay in the car. Trigger the alarm or call 911 on your mobile phone. Professionals will come and help you as fast as possible.

Myth:

Air can run out in a stuck elevator and cause suffocation. If you get stuck in an elevator for long, you will run out of air.

Fact:

Lifts were designed with anticipation of these malfunctions. The cars are therefore not designed to be airtight. They are made to keep the passengers safe until recuse comes.

There are vents to ensure that there is free air movement. The air will be enough, and there is no risk of you suffocating. You can stay in a car for us even if it is full and you will be fine.

FAQs

How often do elevator doors get stuck?

Not very often. There are around 900,000 elevators in the United States of America. The odds of getting stuck are 1 to 100,000.

This is almost a 0% chance. Therefore, you should not worry about getting trapped in an elevator.

What is an elevator drop key?

This is a key used to open elevator doors from outside. In case of an emergency, rescue workers use this key to open the door.

The key is pushed into the access hole. When inside, it drops. And when turned, it releases the door’s locking mechanism. This releases the door, and it will open.

Are stairs safer than elevators?

No. Statistically speaking, elevators are much safer than stairs. Stairs are exhausting to go up. When using stairs, there is the risk of tripping.

If you trip and fall, then you will get pretty seriously injured. Elevators have no actual risk to the passenger. The worst thing that could happen is getting stuck, which will only waste your time.

Can you run out of oxygen in a stuck elevator?

No. This is a myth that is mostly made from movies. You cannot run out of oxygen in an elevator in a real sense.

The cars are well ventilated to keep you safe. The only thing you should worry about is cluster phobia. The air will keep you until you get rescued.

Conclusion

By now you should have the knowledge on how to open an elevator door from outside. Elevators have brought a lot of grace to the human way of life. Reducing the need to go up hundreds of stairs is amazing.

Some emergencies are related to elevators. It is important to know that unless someone is injured. There is no real danger.

You should therefore stay calm and trust the system. Call for help and provide the rescuers with the information they need to get you out. After the incident, make sure the elevator is repaired and well maintained.

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