Elevator Entrapment Protocols and Considerations
What to do when someone is stuck in an elevator? This question comes up on occasion in campus safety and emergency management conversations. I asked some colleagues in higher education emergency management via the Disaster Resistant University Listserv about this and got a lot of great responses.
After reviewing their responses and having some conversations with other practitioners, facilities managers, and safety leaders I found some themes. The main things I see that need to be considered when developing or updating one of these protocols in educational institutions are:
- Protocols should differentiate between occupied and unoccupied elevators.
- Notifications should go to Security/Police and Facilities. If students, families, or staff are inside, an appropriate administrator (Dean on Call and/or HR) should be called.
- Regarding calling the Fire Department, if there are injuries, life-threatening emergencies, or other imminent dangers, call 911 immediately. If none of these conditions exist, work with Facilities and Elevator Techs/Contractors.
- Any elevator that had entrapment should be placed out-of-service with signs until cleared by Facilities and Elevator Techs/Contractors.
For specific example protocols, I have included a link to a view-only Google folder that contains many of the example protocols that I received when I posted to the DRU Listserv. If yours is on this list and you want it off, let me know via comments or email and I will remove it. Folder link is here.