The inspection license posted in the B3 parking structure’s elevator is dated Aug. 16, 2007 and written on the same permit is the expiration date: one year.
Various elevators on campus have been running with expired inspection licenses since August of 2008.’ With the start of the semester students are noticing the five-month delay in state elevator inspections.
‘I’ve noticed (terminated licenses) since my freshman year,’ said Taryn Jordan, a senior health administration major. ‘I always pay attention to the elevator permits. The very first one I saw was in Bayramian Hall and that was in ’05.’
Bill Sullivan, the energy manager for Physical Plant Management (PPM), said that state inspectors, employed by the Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH), set the schedule for when the checks will occur and when licenses will be renewed.
‘The elevator inspectors set that schedule up and the permits are good for a year but (the elevators) are always running at about 18 months,’ Sullivan said. ‘So it’s a matter of the inspectors not being able to schedule it.’
According to Sullivan DOSH has an inspector shortage and doesn’t have the man power needed to monitor the elevator before the certificates expire.
Al Tafazoli, the principal engineer of the elevator, ride and tramway unit for DOSH, said that CSUN has about 70 to 80 elevators and that inspectors started checking for the campus on Jan. 16.
‘Hopefully all the elevators will be finished by Feb. 11,’ said Tafazoli. ‘It will take about a couple of weeks to do all the inspections.’
Sullivan explained some tests done by state inspectors are to ensure the safety of the elevators before licenses are renewed.
‘I know (inspectors) do a load test where they load the elevator up to about 1.5 times what it’s capable of doing and run some tests,’ Sullivan said. ‘Of course, there are electrical and physical inspections.’
Once the maintenance is carried out, inspectors write the requirements and give a deadline for the university to meet those conditions before a license can be renewed. If the requirements aren’t met in the allotted time, the elevator is shut down.
Sullivan said students shouldn’t be worried about their safety when riding in the campus elevators because regular maintenance is done to all the elevators throughout the year.
‘The elevator company that we have – (Amtech Elevator Services) ‘- they’re on contract with us and they come out and do all the scheduled maintenance anyway,’ Sullivan said. ‘So maintenance is being done. Tests are being done. It’s just the permitting that isn’t done.’
Jordan, 21, doesn’t find the regular maintenance to elevators reassuring.
‘I don’t believe it is a good argument because (administrators) may say that but what the permit reflects is reality,’ said Jordan. ‘The reality is that (the campus) is not up to par with standards. The can say they constantly do maintenance on it but the permit doesn’t reflect that.’
Tafazoli also said students shouldn’t be too worried about the elevators.
‘The elevator is one of the safest man-carting machines,’ Tafazoli said.
With the reassuring words from PPM and DOSH workers, Jordan remains wary of the elevators on campus.
‘I don’t feel safe for many reasons. Not all because of the expired permits,’ she said. ‘I actually take the stairs no matter where I am.’