Guideline Lift Maintenance: New Lift Directive

A Guide to the New Lift Directive

The new Lift Directive 2014/33/EU (95/16/EC recast) that was published on 29th March 2014 will be enacted in new Lift Regulations in the UK. However unlike the original Directive, there is no transition period, meaning installers and manufacturers must be ready by 20th April 2016.

Why has the Directive changed?

The main objectives were to align key concepts across directives, improve the evaluation and monitoring of Notified Bodies, strengthen market surveillance across the EU and enhance the credibility of the CE marking as a sign of conformity and of safety. The EU Commission has published all the targeted directives in one package (which is how they have somehow argued that this is a reduction in legislation!).

What does the Directive mean for clients and building designers?

The changes in the Directive, and the developments in technology included in the harmonised standards used to show conformity, continue to underpin the safety of new lifts.

Derogation from BIS, the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, will still be required where the lift pit or headroom dimensions cannot accommodate the minimum permanent refuge spaces. The size of these refuge spaces is likely to increase due to the new harmonised standard, BS EN 81-20. The likely implications are an increase in pit depth and headroom dimensions below which derogation must be sought.

Building designers are urged to discuss their required lift well dimensions with their lift provider at an early stage to ensure adequate pit depth and headroom clearances are incorporated into the building design.

What does the New Lift Directive mean for manufacturers and installers?

In the Lift Directive, “manufacturer” means the manufacturer of a safety component for lifts, and “installer” means the company taking responsibility for the lifts. There are also obligations for importers and distributors of safety components which are similar to the manufacturers’.

The main implications of the recast Directive are as follows:

+ The installer of lifts and manufacturer/importer/distributor of safety components for lifts, must have traceability on who they have bought safety components from and who they have sold them to/which lifts they are installed on.

+ The installer of lifts, and manufacturer/importer/distributor of safety components for lifts – if they detect non conformities – must take corrective action to bring the lift or safety component info conformity (or withdraw/recall a safety component). Where the lift or safety component presents a risk, they must report it to the national authorities together with the corrective actions taken.

It is for the manufacturer or installer to determine if there is a non-conformity and they can use risk assessment to determine the corrective actions required. Non-conformities are relative to the Lift Directive and not to harmonised standards.

+ The technical requirements of the Directive, i.e. Essential Health and Safety Requirements (EHSRs) as listed in Annex I remain essentially unchanged. A change in Annex III (list of safety components, previously Anned IV) results in the main technical change as UCMP devices will need to be CE marked.

+ Almost all chapters and articles have been renumbered as part of a comprehensive editorial review. Two Annexes (III and VII) or 95/16/EC have been removed, so most annexes are renumbered. A correlation table in 2014/33/EU gives a clear indication of such changes.

+ Certificates and notified bodies decisions under the current directive (95/16/EC) remain valid (see 2014/33/EU, article 44). So certificates issued up to 19 April will be valid until their date of expiry.


If you have any questions, or are unsure about the implications of the new Lift Directive to you specifically, feel free to get in touch with Guideline.

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