Is your home or project located on a floodplain? When installing a residential elevator on a floodplain FEMA has provided specific guidelines to protect against the damage caused in the event of a flood; here are the top three.
1. Control System Must be Mounted Above Base Flood Elevation
Base Flood Elevation (BFE), as defined by FEMA, is the computed elevation to which floodwater is anticipated to rise during the base flood. BFE is also sometimes referred to as the 100-year floodplain.
There are two primary drive systems that are appropriate for floodplain applications. A Hydraulic Drive requires that the machine room is located on a level above BFE. The Inline Gear Drive (IGD) has a motor that is mounted to the top of the guiderail structure and is by nature above BFE. The IGD controller can be mounted inside the elevator shaft at the top of the hoistway or remotely up to 40 feet away from the motor.
2. The Elevator Needs to Avoid a Flooded Area
To prevent the elevator from entering a flooded area, a float switch is installed, which will indicate to the controller if a measureable amount of water is in the hoistway. If water is present, the float switch will keep the elevator from accessing the lowest floor, which will protect the elevator car from water damage thereby decreasing the amount of damage done to the elevator.
3. The Elevator Should Retreat to a Level that is Above BFE
Know Your Local Elevator Codes Too
There may also be local codes and code enforcement officials’ standards that are greater than the national codes and can affect the construction practices of the elevator and shaftway. Contact your local Symmetry Elevating Solutions representative to help determine the best practices for construction and installation for your location.