In December 2018, following a number of incidents, the UK’s Lift and Escalator Industry Association (LEIA) issued a Technical Warning Notice about Accessible Goods-Only Lifts (AGOLs) without safety gear and the protection against free-fall and uncontrolled movement.
AGOLs are defined as goods only lifts where the size of the lift car exceeds any one of the following dimensions, Depth> 1,000 mm, Width> 1,000 mm or Height> 1,200 mm.
Since December 2009, all AGOLs supplied in the UK should be fitted with free-fall and uncontrolled movement protection systems in accordance with the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008 and the standard BS EN81-31:2010. In the case of rope and chain driven AGOLs this generally means safety gear, an activation device (e.g. overspeed governor) and an uncontrolled movement system.
Any AGOL not fitted with prevention against free fall and uncontrolled movement poses obvious risks to the safety of those loading and unloading the lift car, those carrying out thorough examination or maintenance; whether accessing the lift car, the car roof or the lift pit.
For lift owners and users who currently have an AGOL without any protection against free-fall and uncontrolled movement, LEIA strongly recommend that safety gear should be fitted and that owners of such lifts should conduct a detailed risk assessment on the use of the lift and all inspection and maintenance operations until such a time as safety gear can be fitted. (NB: This could involve taking the lift out of service).
If the lift owner is unsure whether their AGOL has safety gear fitted, then the lift maintenance company or the person/company conducting the regular thorough examination should report to the owner if there is no safety gear. They should also assist the owner in carrying out the aforementioned risk assessment and any remedial work.
Where the lift was originally designed without safety gear, LEIA recommend that the design should be reassessed and if found not suitable should be improved or changed for a new solution.
Full details on the LEIA Technical Warning Notice can be found on the LEIA Website.
All BKG Accessible Goods Only Lifts supplied by Shorts in the UK over the past 30 plus years have complied with the relevant standards at that time and have been fitted with safety gear. From December 2009 they have complied, and continue to comply, with the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008 and the standard BS EN81-31:2010. For more information on our range our BKG Goods Only Lifts please visit our Goods Only Lifts section
If you have any concerns regarding any AGOL you may be working on or if you need any advice on this safety issue, contact a member of our New Lift Solutions Team who will be able to assist.