If you have been in an elevator on campus recently, you may have noticed one precarious detail. It appears all of the Certificates of Operations are expired. Many elevators surveyed certificates’ expired on July 5th, 2018, with some expiring even earlier.
Although many use the elevators daily without incident, there have been two reported cases of students stuck in malfunctioning elevators. SHC senior, Mary Helen Jones, became the victim of an unfortunate situation when she was on the LAC elevator heading to the third floor when it stopped. Jones said, “Suddenly all the lights went off and the elevator came to a halt. I was there for about 15 minutes before public safety heroically came to my rescue.”
Another victim of inconvenient circumstance was SHC senior, Erica Powell, who was heading to the first floor of the Burke Library when she got stuck. Powell stated, “I was lazily taking the elevator down just one floor when I noticed the light wasn’t changing on the thing and the elevator wasn’t moving.” Like Jones, Powell was promptly rescued from the situation by Public Safety. She also adds, “I haven’t taken that elevator since I got stuck.”
We reached out to Public Safety Communications Officer Donna McSweeny for comment and she said “I am researching this… there have been some changes with our maintenance department and we are not sure if they are going to continue to be over the elevator inspections or that may be the responsibility of another department.” McSweeny assured us that she is diligently looking into getting this issue rectified.
Additionally, The Alabama Department of Labor’s website states that “In its 2003 regular session, the State Legislature added Alabama to the growing list of states requiring an elevator safety inspection program.” This legislation requires that all elevators accessed by the general public be inspected annually.