Lift damaged after Ordeal

The two (2) Anthony Saru Building (ASB) lifts are operational when the Solomon Power load shedding kicks in around 12 or 12.30 pm on Wednesday 31 May 2023.

Due to a delayed procurement of fuel for the ASB standby genset, the genset was not ready to kick in when the main power was turned off.  One of the lifts was in use by 2 persons when the load shedding kicked in. Hence these 2 persons were stuck for about 2 hours when the lift stopped with doors closed.

The lift has air capacity for over 24 hours (and the typical lift company response time is up to 3 hours) and the natural ventilation continues whilst in the lift even with the power off.  (There is mechanical ventilation with the power on and natural ventilation also with the power off).  

The lift cannot drop without power also as it is supported by ropes and rails and even in power failure is held by this system. The doors are automatically locked as a safety precaution unless there is a fire alarm at which time the lift will return to the Ground Floor and open. This case was due to a power supply issue hence the reason the doors remained closed and needed the technician to manually release them.

Unfortunately, our technician was out of Honiara city outskirt on business and has to make his way to town that took him a while to reach the ASB.  However, it can be scary as described by the trapped persons when encircled by darkness. The SINPF management and property team sincerely apologies for the length of time they had to endure waiting for the lift to open. 

When our technician was back on site at the top of ASB lift working to open the doors manually for the 2 trapped persons, he heard noises being applied on the doors to open the lift by force.  The forced opening of the lift has damaged the lift by forcing it open. 

The lift will be examined for its damages, remedial solutions identified and costs determined for repairing the damage.  Only 1 lift will be operational while the damaged lift is being fixed. 

However, the use of the lifts is expected to be minimal as floors on levels 3 to 6 are not fully cleared for occupancy yet after the November 2022 earthquake.

At the recent 2nd media release, the structural report for the post seismic inspection for Anthony Saru was completed and remedial solutions identified to restore the two damaged stair landings and steps.

The Insurance appointed project manager has now prepared an implementation schedule which included securing the necessary immediate approval from the loss adjuster and QBE and for the commencement of task management to start in early June 2023.  

Procurement are set for the month of June and July 2023 and critical paths for restoring the 2 damaged stair landings set for August and September 2023.  Overall completion is expected in October 2023 and hopefully the stairwell and escape exit are fully operational in November 2023. Ongoing minor works will be carried out in the meantime and SINPF will keep everyone updated on the progress

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