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Sunday, 28 December 2014


The earliest known reference to an elevator is in the works of the Roman architect Vitruvius, who reported that Archimedes built his first elevator probably in 236 BC

Henry Waterman invented the modern elevator in 1850. He intended it to transport barrels of flour.

In 1852, Elisha Otis introduced the safety elevator, which prevented the fall of the cab if the cable broke.

Elisha Otis demonstrating his safety system, Crystal Palace, 1853 Wikipedia Commons

The first passenger elevator was installed at E V Haughwout’s department store at 488 Broadway, New York City, on March 23, 1857. It was rather slow travelling at 40 feet per minute. The elevator, which cost $300, was powered by a steam-engine installed in the basement.

The invention of the elevator fostered the development of the skyscraper in modern cities. Before the widespread use of elevators, most residential buildings were limited to about seven stories.

The Equitable Life Building completed in 1870 in New York City was the first office building to have passenger elevators.

The Hammetschwand Lift, built in 1905, is the highest exterior elevator of Europe and is located in Switzerland. The lift whisks passengers up the face of the rocky cliff, making the 153 meters journey in just under a minute.

On July 28, 1945 a plane crashed into the Empire State Building, injuring elevator operator Betty Oliver. When rescuers attempted to lower her on an elevator, the cable snapped, plunging her 75 stories down. She survived the fall and was later found by rescue workers among the rubble. To this day Betty Oliver holds the record for longest survived elevator fall.

Elevator 'close door' buttons in the U.S. were made to have a delayed response because of a section in the 1990 Americans with Disabilities Act that mandates the doors stay open a minimum of three seconds to allow those with disabilities to enter/exit.

There is an elevator company named Schindler’s, meaning that there are Schindler’s lifts!

As of January 2008, Italy is the nation with the most elevators installed in the world, with 850,000 elevators installed

It takes one minute for the lifts in the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, the world’s tallest building, to reach the observation deck on the 124th floor, travelling at ten metres a second.

When elevators fail, they typically don't plummet to the ground like in movies, they go up instead due to the counterweights.

Elevators contain mirrors in order to make the elevator seem larger to help people who are claustrophobic and suffer anxiety.

Elevators make 18 billion passenger trips each year in the United States, according to

In New York, the home of skyscrapers, the average elevator journey takes 118 seconds.

The Shanghai Tower is home to the world's fastest elevator traveling at nearly 46 miles per hour. The elevator can zoom from the second-level basement to the 119th floor in just 53 seconds.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates that all those ups and downs result in a yearly average of 27 deaths.

Source Wikipedia

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