by Ray Lapierre
Millions of Riders Hear Industry's Safety Message
Many national week celebrations exist for various industries, and many within the elevator escalator industry had long expressed the desire for one relating to safety. In October 1992, the Elevator Escalator Safety Foundation's (EESF) Board of Regents agreed to develop an elevator industry safety awareness week and engaged a Washington, DC-based consulting firm to pursue a congressional and presidential declaration of National Elevator Escalator Safety Awareness Week (Safety Week). To reach the riding public prior to the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays - when parents and children use elevators and escalators extensively - the Foundation selected the first full week in November. This time frame allowed for the simultaneous participation of U.S. public schools by implementing the Safe-T Rider program in the classroom. Safety Week Planning The program's objectives, planned during 1992, allowed elevator industry members and equipment owners to actively participate in bringing safety education to the general public while highlighting the safety of the equipment. The project makes the public more aware of safety issues concerning equipment used daily, and at the same time, profiles the industry in a positive light. The process to move Safety Week approval through Congress began with a search for volunteers to secure sponsors in the House of Representatives, plus one in the Senate. Thanks to many in the industry participating in a letter-writing and telephone campaign, Senator Richard Shelby of Alabama and Congressman Howard Coble of North Carolina agreed to sponsor the commemorative legislation. For the legislation to pass, 217 Representatives and 50 Senators were needed to join on House Joint Resolution 231 and Senate Joint Resolution 123. Over the next several months, the industry attempted to enlist senators and representatives who were in the midst of the... [continues]
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