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Lack of Elevator Maintenance Leads to Fire in Charlotte, MI

Written By: Ryan Hussey
Lack of Elevator Maintenance Leads to Fire in Charlotte, MI

Last month in Charlotte, MI, an elevator full of soybeans destined for Japan caught fire. The wooden grain elevator blaze began around 8am and caused a three-hour delay on a westbound Amtrak train from East Lansing to Chicago. Traffic on the main road outside of the facility was shut down until 4:30pm.

According to the Lansing State Journal,

Robert Mansfield, a co-owner, said the fire will put a sizable dent in the company’s grain processing operations. It’s one of five-grain elevators that Citizens owns in the region.

The elevator stored soybeans that were to be shipped to Japan, but Mansfield was not sure of the exact tonnage at the elevator. He said the soybeans and building were insured.

“It’s the heart of our export operation,” Mansfield said. “We know we have a substantial loss, and our (operations) at the plant will come to an end until we can get it fixed.”

Mansfield said it was still not clear how much in losses were incurred by the company.

While the exact cause of the fire has not been made public, Charlotte Deputy Fire Chief Tyger Fullerton ruled out suspicious causes and indicated that the source was electrical in nature – most likely from its exhaust fan or motor.

These huge financial losses underscore the vital importance of regular elevator maintenance.

As VP of Operations for Stanley Elevator, Ryan oversees the field, construction and modernization teams. His resume includes over 10 years of first-hand experience in elevator field service, project management, surveying, estimating and warehouse operations.

Ryan’s role focuses on incorporating new technologies into Stanley Elevator’s operations, while prioritizing the continuous advancement of their elevator maintenance, repairs, modernization and installation services. He also maintains Stanley Elevator’s certifications and relationships with associations, including the Massachusetts Elevator Safety Association (MESA), the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA), the American Institute of Architects (AIA) and the Elevator Contractors of America (ECA).

Ryan holds a bachelor’s degree in management from Providence College and is working on an MBA at Babson College.