TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Elevators sold for residential use nationwide since 1986 are being recalled because young children can get trapped in the space between the doors.
The recall involves several elevator models manufactured by Residential Elevators, Inc. This includes Easy Rider, Horizon Lift, Luxury Lift, Luxury Lift Hydraulic, Luxury Lift Traction and RE. They were sold from 1986 through July 2022 for between $20,000 and $50,000.
The recall comes after complaints about the elevator’s safety. In one report filed April 11, a person reported that they had a home elevator made by Residential Elevators in their home. The person said the doors were not compliant with the 3/4 inch, 4 inch rules for safety to avoid child entrapment.
This rule is a national safety code effective May 2016. In the rule, the clearance between the hoistway doors or gates and the edge of the landing sills should not exceed 3/4 inch. The distance between the hoistway landing door and car gate or door must reject a 4″ diameter ball at all points.
If the issue isn’t fixed, the Consumer Product Safety Commission said a young child could get trapped inside. In the recall notice, the CPSC published a diagram depicting what this situation could look like.
Residential Elevators, Inc. said they are aware of one incident involving one of its elevators that resulted in a serious spinal injury to a child.
The person who issued the complaint said many other vendors had already addressed the risk with recalls and door baffle installation.
The person in the Residential Elevators complaint said they got a notice from the company saying they needed to separately arrange for baffling and they wouldn’t do any maintenance until they did so.
Four months after the person filed the complaint, Residential Elevators recalled their models. Under the recall, space guards will be provided for free. Space guard installation will be provided upon request.
The company says people should keep unsupervised children away from the recalled residential elevators until they can get the space guards installed. People can contact the company for instructions on how to measure for the guards to correct any hazardous gap.
On Thursday, the company announced that is calling on Congress and the Senate Commerce Committee to take action on potentially deadly entrapment hazards. In a release, the company said hazardous gaps, including those mentioned in the recall notice, are due to the landing doors being placed too far from the elevator door at the time of construction.
The company said despite increased awareness of the issue, many homes continue to be built where the distance between the elevator shaft and the landing doors on each floor creates a large, hazardous gap. They are calling on a new national requirement that includes mandatory inspections to address the patchwork of state building codes as they relate to residential elevators.
Residential Elevators, Inc. can be reached toll-free at 877-794-3032 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Instructions on how to measure and a form for service can be located on the company’s website.