Q: Do we need to test our elevator recall system once a month? I don’t see where this is required in the Life Safety Code (LSC). We test our elevator recall system once a year when we conduct testing of the smoke detectors, but an inspector told us we need to test the elevator recall once a month. What are we required to do?
A: Yes, you are required to test your elevator recall and the entire Fire-Fighter’s Service once a month. For existing occupancies, LSC section 19.5.3 requires compliance with section 9.4, which requires all existing elevators that travel a distance of 25 feet or more above or below the level that bests serves the needs of the emergency personnel, to comply with the Fire-Fighter’s Service Requirements found in ASME/ANSI A17.3 Safety Code for Existing Elevators and Escalators. This code references other ASME/ANSI publications which describes the specific requirements for the installation of Fire-Fighter’s Service for the elevators. Furthermore, LSC section 9.4.6 requires the Fire-Fighter’s Service in each elevator to be tested once a month with a written record of the test and findings maintained on the premises. The elevator recall portion is commonly referred to as “Phase 1” and the in-car manual control system for fire-fighters is commonly referred to as “Phase 2”. Both phases, if equipped, must be tested for each car. Please check with your local and state authorities on the qualifications to conduct this test, as some AHJs only permit trained or certified individuals to conduct this test.