Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Fire doors

My apartment building has an elevator. I live on the fourth floor (despite the button saying 3), and I take the elevator every time. I only discovered this morning why that is.

We had a power failure at about 2am this morning. Luckily (?) I woke up when the power went out, and reset my alarm. However, no one reset the elevator. So at 5:20 as I stood at the elevator with my bike (and way too many layers - see below), nothing happened. I gave up and took the fire stairs and went to practice.

When I got back home, the elevator still wasn't working. I hiked back up the stairs with the bike over one shoulder. When I got to my floor, I discovered the door was locked. Fine, so I get out my key. Nope, my key doesn't open the door to my floor. The only access to my floor is via elevator. (Naturally, at this point, the 600mL of water and the coffee I've had are starting to encourage my bladder to send messages to my brain.)

I wait, I bang on the door. Nothing. Finally, some one comes down from above and tells me the building manager has called the elevator repairman. I tell him this doesn't do me much good, since I still need to get in the door, now, get showered and get to work. He offers to get the building manager. A further 10 minutes later the building manager arrives. He opens each floor door, and shoves something in it to prop it open. Here is the conversation that ensues:

"Our keys should open the door to the floor."
"No, they're fire doors."
"Sure, but when the lift is out, we have no other means to access our apartments"
"No, they're fire doors"
"But that's ridiculous"
"Take it up with the fire brigade"
"But there's no fire!"

At this point I give up the argument, there's no point in arguing with man who is actively propping up fire doors.


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