Choosing who monitors your elevator phone may seem like a straightforward decision, but it has many implications for your property’s overall safety and, ultimately, your liability. Here’s what you need to know about your elevator monitoring service company.
Building codes are continually being updated. What doesn’t change is that the responsibility for compliance still falls on you. At Kings III, it’s not only our business to know elevator code requirements, it’s also our business to make sure our technicians have the required training and licensing authorizing them to work on the emergency communications systems in your elevators and keep you compliant. Not everyone trying to monitor your elevator phones does. Let me explain.
In many states, especially the big ones, various forms of company and/or mechanic licensing are required to work in machine rooms or behind elevator cab fixtures. Alarm companies, for example, do not carry that licensing. Most commonly they are low voltage contractors and due to the extensive requirements involved their technicians are not and often cannot become licensed to work on elevator equipment including elevator phones.
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Another thing to consider when choosing your elevator monitoring service company is making sure you understand its primary business. Alarm companies are in the business of responding to identified signals. For example, they receive a smoke alarm signal from the second-floor hallway, dispatch the fire department, and then notify the customer contact of the dispatch.
With an elevator phone, the alarm monitoring operator does not receive a signal on which they simply need to dispatch; they receive a telephone call from a panicked passenger. The operator then needs to determine the nature of the emergency and decide what response is required. And while the fire department is more than capable of responding to the situation and potentially freeing a trapped passenger, costly damage can result.
Fortunately, emergency calls from an emergency telephone are a rare event in an alarm central station. Unfortunately, that means the alarm center operators are not well-practiced when emergencies do happen and the result is a slow or potentially incorrect response.
Life safety is our business. We pride ourselves on providing the right people, with the right response, to produce the right result. Our emergency elevator phone systems are answered 24/7/365 by highly trained professionals who only answer emergency calls and who can provide pre-arrival medical instructions to callers as needed, and all calls are digitally recorded, date and time stamped for event verification purposes.
What does that mean for you? It means you can trust that when there is a situation on your property, the call will not only be answered but handled properly.
For more information check out our guide on Understanding Elevator Emergency Communication Code Compliance.