Elevator’s safety in case of an earthquake

1 October, 2021

An earthquake is a difficult-to-predict natural phenomenon that develops mainly in mountainous or geological faults areas. These events occur due to an Earth's crust sudden rupture caused by the released energy after friction between tectonic plates inside the Earth.

Plates are always in constant motion but the subtlety of these vibrations makes it imperceptible on the surface. With continuous tremors comes a time when large levels of accumulate tension are released causing massive seismic waves knows as earthquakes, tremors or volcanic processes.

These movements has a duration and intensity that can vary according to the shock and geographical territory because some areas area more susceptible to suffer this type of phenomenon. For this reason it is important to take into account place’s architecture and cities planification so their buildings and citizens could be protected in emergency situations.

One of the aspects that scare the most to people living in areas of seismic activity is the possible appearance of an earthquake or volcanic process while using a domestic or public elevator. This is an understandable fear but these situations have now ceased to be a risk for elevator passengers due to modernization and technological advances in safety at lifting sector applied to traditional lifts, hydraulic lifts and pneumatic lifts.

In case of an earthquake any elevator it is capable of putting in place different security systems that guarantee the well-being of its passengers.

Pneumatic vacuum elevators have locks and floor brakes to be activated as security mechanism. It allows the cabin to be anchored at each level facilitating people’s entry and exit in case of an emergency so when the pneumatic lift reaches the selected level steel locks at the top of the car hold lift columns. The cabin will remain in the same position until another action is indicated and at the same time there is no risk of entrapment because in residential and common elevators the car is programmed to descend smoothly to the lower floor in case of energy failure.

After installation domestic elevators go through rigorous maintenance and several revisions to ensure their correct arrangement and operation. In this way risks of accidents are eliminated and the safety of single-family pneumatic lifts is certified.

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