Last edited 25 May 2018

Lifting platform

Lifting devices provide vertical transportation between building floors, levels or decks, and are commonly found in offices, public buildings and other types of multi-storey accommodation.

The requirement for lifting devices is set out in Part M of the building regulations; Access to and use of buildings. Approved document M makes clear that passenger lifts are the most suitable form of vertical transportation, however, in some existing buildings, and very occasionally in new buildings, if a passenger lift cannot be accommodated, then a vertical lifting platform (or platform lift) may be considered as an alternative.

Lifting platforms are only intended for wheelchair users, people with impaired mobility and their companions, not for general users. They should not travel more than 2 m unless there is a liftway enclosure. They are slow moving, limited to 0.15 m/s, and so may not be suitable for users with some disabilities.

Ideally they should have opposing doors, or doors at 90 degrees, so that wheelchair users can leave them without having to reverse.

They should be at least:

  • 800 mm wide and 1,250 mm deep where they are not enclosed and are for unaccompanied wheelchair users.
  • 900 mm wide and 1,400 mm deep where they are enclosed and are for unaccompanied wheelchair users.
  • 1,100 mm wide and 1,400 mm deep where doors are at 90 degrees, they are enclosed and are for accompanied wheelchair users.

In exceptional circumstances in existing buildings, a wheelchair platform may be considered as an alternative. See Wheelchair platform for more information.

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