Contact Us

0403 833 533



Online Enquiry

* Required fields
0403 833 533 Email Instagram Blog

If there is a Fire in the Building, Do Not Ever Use a Lift!


You’ve probably noticed the warning signs posted in shopping malls and high-rise buildings:  “in case of fire, DO NOT use the lift”.  This is not an OH&S-gone-crazy situation; this really is a warning you should heed.  It can be really risky to use a lift in a fire and plenty of people have died doing so. Let’s take a look a closer look at why below.

Why You Shouldn’t Use a Lift in a Fire

  1. You could suffocate – this could occur if the lift shaft floods with smoke from the fire. When smoke starts streaming into an elevator shaft, studies have shown it moves very fast , rapidly raising the temperature in the shaft as well
  2. You could plunge to the ground - When a fire gets into the lift shaft it can actually melt the lift cables, effectively severing the lift and sending it into free-fall
  3. You could get trapped between floors – During a fire, the electrics system of the building may short-circuit meaning the power cuts off. If you’re in a moving lift at the time, there’s every chance you’ll be stuck either between floors, or, find yourself unable to open the doors and exit the lift. It’s estimated about 200 people died in elevators during the World Trade Centre terrorist attack of 2001. Many of these people were likely only trapped but then perished when the towers collapsed
  4. A group of panicking people could mean lift overloadLifts are obviously engineered to be able to carry a certain amount of weight; however in a fire, panicked people are likely to crowd into the lift potentially resulting in the lift failing
  5. You could be transported right to the fire – There’s always the chance the lift will malfunction, and ‘decide’ to open its doors on the very level (or levels) experiencing intense fire
  6. It could be a very slow descent – if people on every level of a high-rise are all attempting to escape via the lift, instead of finding yourself going straight down you could be stopping on every floor! The longer you are in a lift during a fire, the greater the chance of power failure and/or the cables melting

What You SHOULD Do in the Event of a Fire

Take the Stairs

Yes it’s true; in most instances more people get hurt by stairs than lifts. However, if you have access to a stairwell, this is most likely your safest way to exit the building in the event of a fire

Stay Calm

This is not always easy to do; it’s likely people will be rushing towards the exits in a state of panic. However taking a few deep breaths and giving yourself a moment to collect your wits can be a worthwhile strategy, allowing you the chance to assess the situation and to determine your best escape route

Get Out ASAP

It sounds like a really obvious thing to say, but sometimes people respond very slowly when faced with a disaster. Do NOT finish your coffee and log off your computer, simply assess the situation and leave straight away

Try to Stick Together

Do your best to keep track of the people around you and stay together in a group. This way you can help and support each other, plus if you do end up needing rescuing, the job will be much easier for firefighters if you are all in the one spot