Gathering Addresses Israel’s Elevator Standards and Engineering

The beach at Tel Aviv is considered among the best in the world; photo by MFA, Wikimedia.

Israel’s Elevator Standards and Engineering

The fifth Israeli Convention for Standardization and Engineering of Elevators, held at the Kfar Maccabiah Convention Center in conjunction with the March 27-31 meetings of ISO/TC Working Groups (WGs 4 and 6, p. 68), raised several topics of interest to Israel’s vertical-transportation industry.

Varda Edwards, head of OSHA of the Ministry of the Economy of the Government of Israel, opened the convention by thanking Eng. Michael Swisa, head of the Lifts and Lifting Devices Section of the Standards Institution of Israel (SII), for organizing it. Edwards said standards constituted a major avenue for ensuring safety of the public and technicians working in the elevator industry, and noted that elevator safety regulations fall within the purview of her department. She said risk assessment is a key tool that can be used to ensure safety in the elevator industry.

Esfandiar Gharibaan, chair of the European Committee for Standardization (CEN) TC 10, noted the importance of sharing knowledge and experience, and said face-to-face meetings, such as this convention, offered the best opportunities for building friendships and trust. He said he would continue to cooperate for the common good toward enhancing elevator safety.

Installation Distribution and Relevant Standards Work Plan

Swisa praised the work being done under the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), and said it was humbling to be in a room where more than 1,000 years of cumulative experience were at hand. He mentioned there was little visibility given in Israel to accidents that occur elsewhere in the world, and said the ISO meeting provided a chance to learn from each other and, thus, reduce the number of accidents overall. He noted Israel’s elevator standards are being revised with the availability of EN 81-20/-50.

Swisa mentioned there was some concern regarding elevators used during building construction and later turned over for passenger use. It is important, he said, that such elevators meet the applicable codes when turned over. He went on to summarize trends in elevator technology over the years and predicted that the future will bring significant innovation. Examples include “interactive lifts” that provide onboard screens displaying information relating to the elevator, including reassurance if an elevator is stuck, and predicted the widespread implementation of self-testing and -diagnostics that will help elevator technicians and, thus, improve safety.

Summarizing the market situation in Israel, Swisa said that in 2016, there were 32 registered elevator companies, and that 3,949 elevators and 481 escalators were certified. About 20% of the elevators were hydraulic, and of the traction units, 92% were machine room less, up from 50% in 2010. He also mentioned that six companies installed 70% of the units in 2016 and that 75% of the elevators installed were in the 450-kg to 630-kg range. Swisa projected a 10-15% growth in the market for 2017, and said the industry is working overtime to meet the demand.

Development of ISO Prescriptive Code

David McColl, convenor of ISO/TC WG 4 spoke next, covering the development of ISO 8100-1/-2 and ISO TS 8100-3, as described under “TFC” (see article immediately preceding). He explained the “roadmap” of activities, responsibilities, goals and milestones that was developed to implement this undertaking. He advised attendees that CEN/TC 10 has formally agreed to join the ISO initiative and will provide EN 81-20/-50 codes for transition to ISO 8100-1/-2. According to the roadmap, EN 81-20/-50 will be withdrawn by the end of 2022, and, thereafter, only the ISO 8100-1/-2 and ISO TS 8100-3 documents will be valid.

Safety of Escalators and Moving Walks

Next, Dr. Gero Gschwendtner, chair of CEN/TC 10 WG 2 on escalators and moving walks, said EN 115-1 has a global market coverage of 97%, much of which is concentrated in Europe and the Asia-Pacific area. The remaining 3% of market coverage is in North America.

Gschwendtner gave an overview of the EN 115 family of standards and anticipated revision timing:

  • The revised versions of EN 115-1:2008+A1:2010: Safety of Escalators and Moving Walks – Part 1: Construction and Installation and CEN/TR 115-3: Safety of Escalators and Moving Walks – Part 3: Correlation Between EN 115:1995 and its amendments and EN 115-1:2008 are to be published in 2017.
  • Revisions to EN 115-2:2010: Safety of Escalators and Moving Walks – Part 2: Rules for the Improvement of Safety of Existing Escalators and Moving Walks are likely to occur around 2018.
  • EN TS 115-4: Interpretations Related to EN 115 Family Of Standards is being continuously updated; the second edition was published in 2015.
  • Revisions to EN 115-1 address improvement in safety due to changes in proven technology and the need to reflect changes to the state of the art. Specific changes include updating the requirements for step inserts/fixings, permitting electrical braking, and updating requirements for test material for skirting. Further changes embrace the inclusion of fire-protection requirements, introduction of two-direction-mode requirements, inclusion of a stop-switch indicator and introduction of inspection control actuated by the use of both hands. Other changes pertain to description of barriers to prevent access of trolley, requirements for fixed devices in the unrestricted area and the inclusion of seismic design requirements. Still other changes include clarification of the term “speed/nominal speed,” “rated load” becomes “structural rated load,” inspection covers are clarified in more detail, structural design explicitly now includes combplate and floor plate, clarification of fatigue-life requirements for driving elements, requirements for stopping the escalator or moving walk, skirt deflector requirements, handrail system/profile and position requirements and machinery-spaces dimensions.

Planning and Selection of Passenger Lifts for Buildings

Dr. Marja-Liisa Siikonen, chair of ISO/TC 178 WG 6 Study Group on Planning and Selection (SG 5), spoke on the work being done to update ISO TS 8100-32 (formerly ISO 4190-6). Siikonen used a flowchart to demonstrate the lift planning process detailed in the proposed standard.

The presentation evoked extensive interest, as elevatoring is very central to space utilization in Israel. Moreover, destination-based dispatch is very popular in Israel.

Firefighters and Emergency Workers Key Standard

Leon Kugel elaborated on the new Israeli Standard 8888 for a “single portable elevator key” for firefighters and emergency workers. The key engages a cylinder lock with an electrical cutoff switch and replaces the multiple keys previously used on elevators in Israel. It is restricted to use by firefighters, emergency workers and qualified elevator personnel. Kugel acknowledged the contribution of Manny Duren, who initiated and pursued the development of the standard but who, unfortunately, died before the standard was completed.

Risk Assessment and Performance-Based Codes

Your author was invited to address the convention on Risk Assessment Methodology and trends in worldwide performance-based codes. During this talk, the ISO 14798 risk assessment and reduction methodology — which is the yardstick in the elevator industry — was described.

The objective of ISO 14798 is to describe principles and procedures for a consistent and systematic risk-assessment methodology relevant to elevators, escalator and passenger conveyances. The methodology helps identify risks of harm resulting from various hazards, hazardous situations and harmful events.

Risk assessment is a team-based process that requires facilitation by an experienced leader. The process involves defining the subject to be addressed, the formation of a team and the identification of initial assumptions. It is then necessary to identify hazards to elevator users, authorized persons and nonusers. Once implemented, triggers of incidents and their effects are identified, and severity and probability of incidents — i.e., risk — are established using specific tables and templates described in the standard. If necessary, a corrective action designed to reduce the risk is developed.

The methodology can be used for many purposes to ensure safety, such as service, maintenance, repair and modernization. It has proved particularly useful in product development, especially for innovative products.

The Machinery and Lifts Directives spawned a wave of innovation in the elevator industry and inspired ISO to create documents and processes that could be widely adopted to support innovation with safety. The value of this approach has been recognized in several parts of the world, and adoption and utilization of this important process is gaining momentum. Your author described the ISO 8100-30 (formerly ISO 22559) process, which uses Global Essential Safety Requirements and risk assessment to assist in the development of safe innovative products. The A17.7/B44.7 performance-based code, which is based on ISO 8100-30 and ISO 14798, was developed for use in North America (NA). Conformity assessment evaluation is provided by Notified Bodies in the EU and by Accredited Elevator/Escalator Certification Organizations (AECOs) in NA. In other parts of the world, Certification Organizations provide a verification function for safe innovative products. ISO has published documents to expedite the accreditation of Global Conformity Assessment Bodies that ultimately will be empowered to certify safe innovative products on a global scale.

TWIN Lift Technology and Other Topics

Jorge Mueller of thyssenkrupp described the TWIN Lift technology. He said TWIN can save 40% in area and represented significant savings in energy consumption. More than 200 TWINs have been installed worldwide, he said, all of them employing destination-based dispatch systems. No problems related to collisions between TWIN cars or the potential for landing doors being open simultaneously on different floors have occurred with any of the installations.

Mueller followed briefly with a conceptual description of the company’s MULTI system, which features multiple linear-motor-driven, ropeless cars in a hoistway. This concept is still in the testing phase, and speeds of up to 6 mps are being evaluated.

Eng. Zeev Marcus gave an update on Standard 5458: Elevator Service, which is based on EN 13015: Maintenance Instructions. He said the transfer of service from one company to another increases risk, so precise service information is critical. Eng. Dani Sarid spoke of the role of monitoring in the detection of malfunctions and consequent accident prevention.

CEN TC 10 AH 17 Meeting

After the convention, a meeting of CEN TC 10 Ad Hoc Group 17 (AH 17) took place. Gharibaan also chairs AH 17 and updated attendees on the purpose, role and activities of the group.

AH 17 is an international cooperation group formed under cooperation agreements between CEN and ISO. Members of the group are appointed by the decisions of ISO TC 178 and CEN TC 10.

 AH 17 was initially formed to collect input and comments from ISO members for developing EN 81-20/-50 standards, which were published in 2014. It is currently working on future amendments of those standards. As ISO TC 178 has decided to adopt EN 81-20/-50 standards as ISO 8100-1/-2, the work of this group will be input to the future developments of ISO 8100-1/-2.


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