Risks and safety measures in lifts: what you need to know

Lifts have become an integral part of our lives, making transport inside buildings and structures more convenient and faster. However, as with any form of transport, there are risks associated with using lifts. In this article, we will examine some of the common risks and safety measures you should know in order to use lifts safely and effectively.

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1. Regular maintenance and inspections:

One of the most important measures to ensure safety in lifts is regular maintenance and inspections. First and foremost, lifts should be regularly inspected by qualified technicians to ensure that all components are functioning properly. This helps to identify any problems before they develop into dangerous situations. In addition, regular maintenance helps to keep the lift in good working order in the long term.

2. Maximum load and overload:

Lifts are designed to withstand a certain maximum load. Therefore, it is essential to respect the weight limit indicated in the lift and not to overload the car. Otherwise, overloading can cause malfunctions and lead to a risk of accidents such as blockages or sudden falls. For this reason, it is essential to carefully read the signs inside the lift and distribute the weight evenly among passengers and objects.

3. Correct use and safe behaviour:

In order to ensure safety, it is important to follow some basic practices when using a lift. For example, it is advisable to wait for the lift to arrive at your floor before entering and to let people who need to get off do so before getting on. Also, during the ride, it is essential to avoid playing pranks or behaving recklessly that could put yourself or other passengers at risk. Therefore, it is essential to maintain safe and polite behaviour under all circumstances.

4. Managing emergencies:

In the event of an emergency situation, it is vital to remain calm and follow appropriate safety procedures. Lifts are equipped with emergency communication systems, such as alarm buttons or telephones, which can be used to call for help in case of need. It is essential to avoid trying to get out yourself or to force the doors, as such actions could put your safety at risk. Therefore, it is advisable to wait for the arrival of emergency workers and follow their instructions.

5. Awareness-raising and training:

Awareness and training regarding lift safety play a key role in ensuring proper use. Therefore, it is the responsibility of lift operators to provide clear information on the correct use of lifts and emergency response. Furthermore, it is essential that passengers are aware of potential risks and appropriate safety measures to avoid dangerous situations.

6. Emergency stop:

Lifts are equipped with an emergency stop system that can be activated in case of dangerous situations. In the event that you perceive an anomaly or encounter a problem while travelling in the lift, it is essential to press the emergency stop button immediately. Thanks to this action, the lift will be stopped and technical assistance will be called to intervene promptly.

7. Fire alarm:

Often, lifts are equipped with a built-in fire alarm system. If smoke or fire is detected in the building, the lift is automatically sent to the designated evacuation floor or is taken out of service. Therefore, it is vital to be aware of the evacuation procedures and to follow the safety instructions in case of a fire emergency.

8. Obstacle sensor and door safety:

To increase safety, modern lifts are equipped with safety sensors that detect the presence of obstacles when closing the doors. Thanks to these sensors, the doors will not close if something is between them, thus reducing the risk of injury or crushing. Therefore, it is important never to attempt to block or hold the lift doors open, as this can cause the safety system to malfunction.

9. Lighting and emergency signalling:

In order to ensure adequate visibility, lift cabins must be well lit. In the event of a power failure or breakdown, lifts are generally equipped with an emergency light and warning lights to indicate the operating status. Therefore, it is essential to be aware of the location of these signals and how to use them in an emergency.

10. Restricted access and key security:

To prevent unauthorised use or vandalism, lifts can be equipped with limited access systems, such as the use of keys or magnetic cards. These measures help prevent access to unauthorised persons and reduce the risk of dangerous situations inside the lift.

11. Training of maintenance workers:

Lift maintenance workers must receive adequate training to carry out maintenance and repair activities in a safe manner. It is essential that they are familiar with relevant safety procedures, rules and regulations in order to ensure the proper operation of lifts and reduce the risk of accidents.