Hispanic Heritage Month: Latino-owned elevator company develops air purifying system in response to pandemic
For Hispanic Heritage Month, News 12 is spotlighting a Bronx-based, Latino-owned elevator company that developed an air purifying system for elevators in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"We're effectively removing the risk you're trying to combat by wearing a mask and trying to social distance," says CEC Elevator President Carlos Vanga Jr.
When the pandemic hit, the CEC Elevator company got to work developing Sterilyft, a device placed on top of an elevator cab to remove, filter and replace the air inside twice every minute. Studies show Sterilyft kills 99.9% of germs to make riding safer.
Vanga’s father started the company nearly 30 years ago manufacturing elevator interiors across the tri-state. He says it was important to find a preventative measure so that people can safely return to work and prepare for whatever is next.
Their device is already being used in elevators across the city and country.
"Always had a drive in all of us and I got that from my father. He's one of those guys that came from Puerto Rico. You know, he was one of those guys from the streets and hustled his way through everything else," says Vanga.
With his father now retired, Vanga, along with Nick Gretsuk, developed this system that they hope is just the beginning.
"In five years, 10 years, yes, I hope that every single space that we walk in that we close a door there will be something cleaning the air."
They're in the process of developing a similar product to purify and sterilize the air in large rooms like schools, bars and restaurants.