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Understanding Proposed Changes to NYC Elevator Code

Changes include defining more specifically who is able to do inspections, as well as the timing and type of inspections.

By Mike Wallace  

Effective January 1, 2022, several changes to the NYC Building Code and the Elevator and Escalator Safety Code will impact the way elevators will be inspected and tested in the City of New York.  Most notably, the NYC Department of Buildings will no longer subcontract “Periodic Inspections” to what were previously known as “PVT Agencies," but rather the performance of these yearly vertical transportation inspections will become the responsibility of the building owner.  

The following additions and/or changes to the NYC Building Code, Article 304 - Elevators and Conveying Systems are being adopted:   

  • Inspections performed by private sub-contractors on behalf of the NYC DOB Elevator Division must now be performed by an approved elevator agency who is not affiliated with the agency performing the maintenance. Owners will be required to contract with approved elevator agencies at their expense.  These inspections will now be referred to as “Periodic Inspections” and are in addition to the current Category 1 & 5 Inspections being performed.   

  • There are also changes being made to the time frames for filing of Category 1 & 5 Inspection reports as well as the correction of deficiencies and filing of Affirmation of Correction affidavits.  All of which are being reduced significantly. 

Here are a few other new rules to keep in mind.

Periodic Inspections 

Periodic inspections shall be performed between January 1st and December 31st of each year at a minimum of three months from the date of any Category 1 testing or previous periodic inspection. Initial periodic inspections on new installations must be performed in the calendar year following the final acceptance test. For private residence elevators, the periodic inspection and Category 1 and/or 5 testing may be performed on the same date. Filing of Periodic Inspections in DOB NOW must be completed within 14 days of the date of inspection. 

All defects as noted in such periodic inspection report must be corrected within 90 days after the date of inspection. The department may grant an extension of 45 days upon submission of an application by the owner demonstrating a practical difficulty in complying within the 90-day timeframe. In no case shall more than two such extensions be granted for a specific defect. An Affirmation of Correction shall be filed within 14 days after the date of correction. 

Category 1 & 5 Inspections 

The completed reports, with all applicable signatures, shall be filed within 21 days after the date of the test. Exception: Reports are not required to be submitted to the department for private residence wheelchair lifts and private residence dumbwaiter devices. However, the owner shall maintain an inspection and test log to be available to the department upon request. 

All defects as found in such category test report shall be corrected within 90 days after the date of test. An Affirmation of Correction shall be filed within 14 days of the date of correction. 

Mike Wallace is director of marketing for VDA, an elevator and escalator consulting firm.  


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  posted on 12/1/2021   Article Use Policy

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