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The lift owner’s survival guide: 10 things you need to know

Nick Mellor, MD of the Lift & Escalator Industry Association (LEIA)

Various regulations put obligations on ‘owners’ of lifts, lifting platforms, escalators and moving walks – responsibilities often delegated to FMs. Did you know that releasing trapped passengers is your responsibility, and that you’re also required to control the use of the keys provided for your equipment, including landing door unlocking keys? Here’s a snapshot of the 10 things you need to know...

1.    Maintenance of your equipment is your responsibility
Various regulations place a duty on the owner to have equipment maintained and there is a general duty under section 3 of the Health and Safety at Work Act.

2.    You will need an agreement with a maintenance contractor
To meet this duty, you need to find a maintenance contractor to maintain your equipment who will also be able to offer advice and keep you up to speed on any issues.

3.    Agree an agreement for at least three years
Ideally a good maintenance programme agreement should be between three to five years. This will give your maintenance contractor an interest in ensuring the reliability and longevity of your equipment.

4.    Your passenger lifts need to be examined every six months
Don’t confuse ‘thorough examination’ with maintenance. An examination checks the safety equipment and is required under regulations (The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER)). This needs to be carried out by an independent competent person. Their report should be shared with your maintenance contractor.

5.    Conducing simple checks with keep your equipment running for longer
These can be simple things, like checking that the lift stops at each level, that the alarm works, the doors open and close smoothly and that door passenger protection devices are working correctly. Any issues should be reported to your maintenance contractor.

6.    There is good guidance in British Standards
There is guidance on your how to manage your responsibilities in British Standards documents BS 7255 safe working on lifts, BS 7801 safe working on escalators and moving walks and BS 9102 safe working on lifting platforms.

7.    Trapped passengers are your responsibility!
Be sure to include a clause in your maintenance agreement which calls for your contractor to released trapped passengers. It is recommended that releasing them is only done by a lift engineer, to avoid accidents or damage to your equipment.

8.    Never let untrained people use the lift landing door unlocking key
There have been several accidents caused by untrained personnel using this key to release doors and free trapped passengers. In many cases the lift owner was found responsible. Check out the LEIA and HSE safety campaign for guidance.

9.    Test your alarm regularly
It sounds obvious, but this is really the only way that trapped passengers can call for help so needs to be in working order. If the alarm isn’t working, then you will need either remove the lift from service or find an alternative communication method to put in place temporarily. If you do not have a two way voice alarm then you should have one fitted.

10.    Be sure to check that lift doors are fitted with detectors
Full height passenger detectors are fitted on new lifts and can be readily fitted to existing lifts to reduce the risk from closing doors. There have been incidents where children have trapped their fingers on glass doors when they open. If in doubt, have a look at the LEIA Liam Loves Lifts safety campaign which highlights this.

Nick Mellor will be hosting a free seminar session for FMs at the forthcoming LIFTEX 2019 event (15 – 16 May 2019, ExCeL, London). Organised by LEIA, LIFTEX takes place only once every three years and offers free advice and guidance through seminars, as well as an exhibition of over 100 leading suppliers of lift products. Register for free at


CH&CO’s health and safety success recognised with third consecutive RoSPA Gold Award

CH&CO has been awarded the highest accolade of a RoSPA Gold Award for the third year running, confirming its ongoing commitment to raising health and safety standards.
The award recognises CH&CO’s safety success across the diverse catering and hospitality business that employs over 6,450 people at more than 780 locations across the UK.
The internationally-renowned RoSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) Health & Safety Awards is the longest-running industry awards scheme in the UK. Attracting entries from organisations around the world, it recognises achievement in health and safety management systems, including practices such as leadership and workforce involvement.
RoSPA Gold Award winners, like CH&CO, have achieved a very high level of performance, demonstrating well-developed occupational health and safety management systems and culture, outstanding control of risk and very low levels of error, harm and loss.
Emma Hill, Head of Food, Health, Safety and Environment, CH&CO, said: “We’re thrilled to have been awarded a RoSPA Gold Award for the third consecutive year. We work very hard, all year round, to make health and safety part of CH&CO’s culture and maintain our excellent safety standards across all our sites and offices. We use a variety of training and communication tools to achieve this, and to have our practices and systems rubber stamped by a globally-respected and rigorous awards scheme is fantastic; we’re very proud of our safety success.”
Terry Waldron, COO, CH&CO, added: “Our business is all about people, from our teams in our sites and offices to our clients, customers and supplier partners. We have a responsibility to help them all get home safely at the end of the working day, and we take this very seriously. Our third consecutive RoSPA Gold Award upholds the clear and robust systems we have in place and our commitment to a positive health and safety culture.”
Julia Small, RoSPA’s head of qualifications, awards and events, said: “The RoSPA Awards have become the key fixture in the health and safety calendar. Highly-respected, with almost 2,000 entrants every year, RoSPA award winners benefit from the wide-ranging rewards of improved sector reputation.”
CH&CO will be presented with its award on Tuesday 18 June 2019 at ExCel, London.


DGTCS Invests In Its Permanent Build Offering Through New Appointment

Leading cold and humidity-controlled storage provider Dawsongroup Temperature Control Solutions (DGTCS) is once again investing in its skills and services through the recruitment of Simon Gumery as commercial manager for construction projects.
Simon is a well-known name in the food and pharmaceuticals world following 15 years in the temperature controlled industry. In addition to his vast experience, DGTCS and its customers will benefit from his extensive business development and project management skills.
Simon said: “One of the main reasons I wanted to join DGTCS was that my personal values are very much aligned with the business; my main aim is to deliver a quality project to those wanting a new build or permanent extension; from concept to completion, I now have access to the vast array of assets and knowledge at DGTCS which will allow me to collaborate and provide the best possible service to customers.
“DGTCS has a solid reputation for its professional, high calibre team. I recognised the focused leadership, resources and high skill-set that existed within the business; together with the ambition that’s felt from the top down. I wanted a challenge and DGTCS has the financial strength to grow in some exciting directions. I wanted to be a part of that.”
Rod Benham, managing director at DGTCS, added: “Simon will play an essential role in the growth of the firm, focusing our strategy on working with more clients looking for factory extensions and new builds. We expect demand for this service to grow following Brexit as UK companies realise that they need to invest in production and storage to maximise their own processes and efficiencies.
“The many industries we work across, including food and drink and pharmaceuticals, are constantly evolving with ever heightening quality standards and increasing levels of compliancy and technical capability. The demand for factory extensions and new builds are a key part of the DGTCS growth strategy.”
DGTCS construction builds can be standalone complexes or units which link to existing buildings. These solutions include the option to add blast or defrost chambers to loading docks to reduce the distance between storage and loading to streamline the process, or production facilities that support the expansion of production lines or introduce new ones.

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