The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) 1998 (1999 in Northern Ireland) cover all work equipment with a lifting function. LOLER applies in addition to PUWER, to offer adequate safeguards to people working with lifting equipment.
Although LOLER is not applicable to non-work equipment, for example public lifts in a shopping centre, there are still responsibilities to have these examined under the health and safety at Work etc Act 1974. If LOLER is used as a guide, it would generally satisfy these legal requirements.
LOLER does not apply to escalators and we would carry out a thorough examination of escalators under the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992.
LOLER applies not only to the equipment itself, but also to the safe operation of that equipment. The user is required to:
- Ensure that the equipment is suitable
- Ensure that the lifting operation will not endanger people in the vicinity
- Assess requirements for inspections of the lifting equipment and accessories
- Have regular thorough examinations carried out by a suitably competent person
Following the installation of new plant and machinery the requirements for initial examination vary according to the regulations which apply. LOLER states that the initial inspection should be completed not more than 12 months from the equipment being put into service for the first time. However, for lifting equipment we advise best practice would be to undertake inspections before being put into service for the first time and then there after at the statutory intervals under PUWER.
PUWER examination of lifting equipment under normal use is set at six months for equipment lifting people and 12 months for all others. Where equipment is not being used under normal operating conditions, this frequency will be dependent on the findings of the written scheme and may be more or less than the statutory frequency.
PUWER frequency of inspection is dependent upon the duty holder’s
The prudent approach, and our recommendation, is that all equipment is examined by a competent person following its installation or commissioning and before it is first put into use. This could also apply to any major modernisation work on the lift and we recommend best practice is for a LOLER examination before being put into service after completion of these works - as with a new installation.
LOLER examinations should also be applied for each time ‘Exceptional Circumstances’ may have occurred. This could include where the equipment’s safety has been jeopardised through malfunction of certain components.
LOLER examinations may also be applied in conjunction with a Written Scheme of Examination. There are certain circumstances where this is a mandatory requirement, please speak to the Bureau Veritas team if you need advice.
Engineering Inspection Department
0845 600 1828
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