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Equipment Inspections

LOLER 98 Thorough Examination or Inspection

Lifting Equipment is required to be thoroughly examined in accordance with a scheme of examination to comply with LOLER 1998 and PUWER 1998. An approved, competent person can carry out these examinations.

The Regulations and what they mean

Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 (LOLER 98) are the regulations that apply specifically to Lifting Equipment.

LOLER 98 is aimed at ensuring that all lifting operations are properly planned, that Lifting Equipment is used in a safe manner and that, where necessary, tested/checked at regular intervals by a Competent Person.

Do the Regulations apply to me?

If you are an employer or self-employed person providing lifting equipment for use at work, or you have control of the use of lifting equipment, then the Regulations will apply to you. They do not apply if you provide equipment to be used primarily by members of the public, for example lifts in a shopping centre. However, such circumstances are covered by the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 (HSW Act).

How often must Lifting Equipment and accessories be thoroughly examined?

You must have lifting equipment thoroughly examined:

  • - before using it for the first time - unless the equipment has an EC Declaration of Conformity less than one year old and was not assembled on site. If it was assembled on site, it must be examined by a competent person to establish the assembly was correct and safe, eg a platform lift installed in a building
  • - after assembly and before use at each location for equipment that requires assembly or installation before use, eg tower cranes
  • - regularly in service if the equipment is exposed to conditions causing deterioration that is likely to result in dangerous situations.
  • - at regular intervals (either at least every 6 months or 12 months depending on whether the lifting equipment is for lifting people or not); or - in accordance with an examination scheme drawn up by a competent person. Accessories for lifting must be thoroughly examined either at least every 6 months or in accordance with an examination scheme.

Always have lifting equipment thoroughly examined following 'exceptional circumstances', eg if it is damaged or fails, is out of use for long periods, or if there is a major change in how it is used which is likely to affect its integrity.

Lifting equipment should be inspected by a Competent Person under a Thorough Examination Scheme, which allows for specific timescales of use for the equipment and conditions it is used in. Therefore if the conditions are deemed arduous (24hr operation, salt or brine atmospheres), then the timescales should be reduced according to the specifications of a Risk Assessment.

The following timescales give the maximum time periods for specific equipment under normal working conditions, but should be adjusted accordingly as described above. Any equipment that carries people must be inspected at least every 6 months. The following list is not exhaustive:

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