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There are hundreds of thousands of goods and passenger lifts in use at any given moment around the world, safely transporting us up and down buildings thanks to some pretty rigorous standards. But the national or regional rules and regulations that apply to them are reflected in different standards, making international trade a problem. For the first time, an ISO International Standard just published will harmonize them all, enabling safety to improve and the technology to grow.

They started thousands of years ago as manually operated pulleys, such as those operated by slaves in the Roman Coliseum. Now some are breathtaking feats of engineering, such as the Gateway Arch in Missouri. Most, however, are less glamorous and just aim to transport us from one floor to another.

There are three main standards in use around the world to outline the mechanical and operational characteristics of lifts, all arriving at a similar level of safety and quality. However, they all have different requirements, and are tied to the economic area in which they operate, meaning they are not always accepted in other parts of the world.

ISO 8100, Lifts for the transport of persons and goods – Part 1: Safety rules for the construction and installation of passenger and goods passenger lifts and Part 2: Design rules, calculations, examinations and tests of lift components overcome this by providing internationally agreed requirements that has worldwide approval for use in all economic areas and is compliant with all local legislation.

Dr Gero Gschwendtner, chair of the ISO technical committee that developed the standards said the harmonization of the existing standards removes the barrier to international trade and ensures the same safety level for all our stakeholders all over the world.

 “This will not only reduce administration for many businesses in the field, but will also provide a platform for safety, innovation and new technologies to grow.”

ISO 8100-1 and -2 were developed by ISO technical committee ISO/TC 178 Lifts, escalators and moving walks, the secretariat of which is held by AFNOR, ISO’s member for France.

They are available from your national ISO member or the ISO Store.

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Clare Naden
Clare Naden

+41 22 749 0474


ISO/TC 178
Lifts, escalators and moving walks

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Sandrine Tranchard

+41 22 749 03 11

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