Are you ready for EN 81-20:2014?

EN 81-20 & EN 81-50 are European standards for the design, manufacture, construction, examination and safety of new passenger and goods passenger lifts replacing EN 81-1:1998 & EN 81-2:1998.

The standards came into force in August 2014 but the date of cessation of the old standard is August 2017, giving the lift, building and construction industry just a little over two years from now to make the necessary changes for regulatory compliance.

However, with many construction projects already in the design phase and due for completion after the August 2017 deadline, it’s vital to factor in the changes today. 

There are two aspects to the revised standards: safety of the passengers and safety of the workers.

Major revisions are highlighted below:

  • All landing doors need to fulfil a pendulum shock test and the forces that they have to withstand are increased; there are also additional retainers requested to hold the doors when the main guiding element has failed. Furthermore, measures need to be taken to prevent lift passengers from being hit by the closing doors.
  • The standard requires a larger refuge space at the top and bottom of the lift shaft subject to the number of persons that may be present on the car roof or in the lift pit. Each person should have his own refuge space and the labels should indicate the number of persons allowed in those areas. This effectively means that designers will have to allow for larger spaces for new lifts.
  • The strength of the lift shaft has altered substantially and needs to withstand greater perpendicular forces than before, all of which can have financial implications for building designers.
  • The new standards are more rigorous, taking account of proven technology.
  • An engineer’s inspection control station should be provided in the pit
  • There are new rules for pit access ladders and the position of the lowest floor landing door lock release.
  • EN 81-50 focuses on the safety components such as the landing door locks.

EN 81-20 & EN 81-50 do not just affect the lift industry but also have a significant impact on building owners and the construction industry.

The standards can be purchased from BSI at the following