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by the NFCC

Control measure

Isolate the power supply to lift machinery

Control measure knowledge

Although it is possible to provide personnel with information about the types of lifts they are likely to encounter, it may be necessary to obtain details about a lift from the responsible person or lift manufacturer.

Lift machine rooms could be locked; access should preferably be gained without force. For further information refer to Industry - Gain access or entry: Sites with security features.

Isolating the power supply to the lift power sources, including auxiliary and backup systems, should be done as soon as possible. However, in the case of some hydraulic lifts, the power supplies may need to remain in operation. If possible, and providing they are on a separate circuit to the lift machinery, lighting circuits should be left in operation.

If power supplies are not isolated, emergency responders should be briefed about the presence of electricity. Additional control measures, such as using electrical gloves, may be required. For further information refer to Utilities and fuel – Personal protective equipment: Electrical gloves.

If there is more than one lift in the machine room, with only one lift needing to be isolated, emergency responders should be briefed that other machinery will remain in operation and be advised of its location. Consideration should be given to isolating all machinery if leaving it in operation would create an unacceptable level of risk.

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Consider making electrical gloves available to personnel for use at incidents involving a live electricity supply

  • Provide personnel with access to information about the emergency operation of lifts

  • Record contact details of the responsible person, where appropriate to provide assistance with the emergency operation of lifts

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Liaise with the responsible person to gain information about the emergency operation of the lift

  • Identify the type of lift and isolate the power if appropriate

  • Ensure emergency responders are aware of the presence of electricity if the power to the lift cannot be isolated

  • Ensure emergency responders are made aware of the location of any machinery that is intentionally remaining in operation

  • Consider the appropriate use of electrical gloves, in line with service procedures