People living at an apartment building in the southeast Calgary community of Forest Lawn are once again calling on management to fix the elevators.
Residents at Radisson Place told Global News one of the elevators hasn’t been working for the last two years.
The other elevator requires maintenance, and the Calgary Fire Department said it has been called out three times this year for people stuck in the elevator.
Tracey Budge lives in the building and was the latest person who trapped.
On Tuesday, she said she was coming home from the grocery store when she opted to use the elevator.
“The door closed and then it just stayed there,” said Budge. “I called the property management company first right away. And then at the 30-minute mark, I called 911.”
A maintenance worker managed to open the elevator doors just as CFD arrived and Budge said she spent about 45 minutes inside.
Budge said being trapped was an inconvenience, but she worries that some of the more senior residents would have been worse off.
“If somebody that was not healthy was trapped in there that would cause serious issues,” Budge said.
“Somebody is going to get very very sick and or die if they get stuck in there.”
Beyond the chance of being trapped in the elevator, several residents said the one working elevator is unreliable, sometimes being out for hours at a time.
With dozens of residents living with mobility issues, Budge is worried their quality of life is suffering
“They can’t leave their building and they can’t get into their building,” Budge said. “Somebody’s going to get sick and somebody’s going to die. That’s my main concern.”
“The two elevators at Minto apartments’ Radisson Place are undergoing modernization,” the building management company Minto said in a statement. “Upgrades were further complicated by COVID-19.”
The company said the refurbishment of the first elevator is scheduled to be completed by Nov. 30 and the second one should be done by Feb. 26, 2021. The ongoing pandemic caused a delay in parts, Minto said.
The Alberta Elevating Devices & Amusement Rides Safety Association — the organization that monitors elevator safety — said it did receive two permit applications from Minto on Aug. 17, and is aware of the planned completion dates.
Carol Henke, the public information officer with the Calgary Fire Department, said a safety codes officer is also in communication with the building management.
“We are currently working with the building management to support their repair efforts in what has been a very challenging and complex issue with the building’s elevators,” Henke said. “Building management has hired 24-hour security to assist tenants during this repair.”
Henke added that when elevators are not working, it can affect firefighters’ ability to efficiently fight a fire since residents are usually exiting down the stairwells.
Since one of the elevators is operational and the owner is working on repairs, the CFD has not placed a mandatory completion date for those repairs, Henke said.