Seismic Detection Otis Elevators
Smart, smart design. And guess what it all worked! Otis demonstrated great customer responsibility ….
The United Technologies elevator unit took 13,000 calls from Japanese customers in 48 hours and restored service to 16,400 lifts within seven days
Michaud-Daniel knew Otis had technology on its side, since about half the elevators it maintains in Japan—including most in high-rise buildings and regions with severe earthquake risk—are equipped with seismic detectors. At the first vibration signaling the onset of a quake, these devices return the elevators to the ground floor so passengers can exit, then block them until Otis can check their safety.
The detectors worked. Some 16,700 elevators in the areas affected by the quake were shut down by the emergency systems. Otis, which had worldwide revenues of $11.58 billion in 2010 and manufactured about 40,000 of the 80,000 elevators it services in Japan, didn’t receive any report of trapped or injured passengers. “All the elevators operated as they were supposed to,” says Michaud-Daniel.
The bottom line: At the quake’s onset, Otis’s seismic detectors shut down 16,700 elevators. Then its personnel rushed into the zone to restore service.