Differences EN115 2008 & 2017
  • January 3, 2021
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Article 2 -Differences between EN 115 2008 and 2017 Escalator Standards

What Are the Differences between EN 115 2008 and 2017 Escalator Standards?

Differences between EN 115 2008 and 2017 became noticeable when the European Standards Committee released the escalator standard EN 115-1:2017 on the 19th of July in 2017 with major differences. The older version of the standard, EN 115-1:2008, was invalidated by the 31st of January in 2019. All the safety requirements, protective measures, and control equipment and functions of the escalator have been changed according to the latest version of the standard, therefore escalators that are to be sold to countries of EU members must hold a CE Certificate of the latest version of the standard.

Differences between EN 115 2008 and 2017 Escalator Standards are as the Following:

1) In the escalator exterior panels, the dimension of the gaps that have a risk of being in touch with moving parts must not exceed 4 mm. the exterior panels must withstand a force of 250 N applied at any point on a round or square area of 2500 mm2 without any permanent deformation.

2)The inspection covers in EN 115-1:2017 latest requirements are stated as the following: 

If the inspection covers have two parts or more, one safety device must be provided for the 1st plate and other plates must be designed in a way that they cannot be opened or removed before the first plate is opened (overlapped or interlocked). If all of them can be opened in any order, we must install a safety device for each plate.

Note: The floor plate is considered as an inspection cover and other inspection covers must follow the conditions stated above. The parts of interior panels of the balustrade (such as decking panels) that are removable for maintenance purposes must not be considered as inspection covers.

3) For the structural design, the maximum deflection of the comb plate and floor plate under a rated load of 5000 N/m2 must not be over 4 millimeters.

4) New requirements of EN 115-1:2017 states that for the step deflection test we must apply a single perpendicular load of 3000 N (including the weight of plate) to the tread surface center on a steel plate (0.20 m x 0.30 m & at least 25 mm thick). The deflection must not be more than 4 millimeters and no permanent deformation must be seen, but initial tolerance settings are acceptable. 

For the step side deflection test, near the skirt, we must apply a single perpendicular load of 1500 N on a steel plate (50 mm x 50 mm & at least 25 mm thickness) and in this case, the deflection of the tread surface on the sides must not exceed 4 millimeters.

If there are, insert/fixing on the tread surface we must only apply the perpendicular load on insert/fixing itself. The area of the load must be 50 millimeters by the width of the inserts and fixings. After the test, no permanent deformation must be observed. 

5) New requirements of EN 115-1 states that For the step riser deflection test we must apply a single perpendicular load of 1500 on a square or round steel plate (50 mm x 50 mm & at least 25 mm thickness) which is shaped to fit on the riser curvature .in this case the deflection of the step riser must not exceed 4 millimeters.

If there are, insert/fixing on the step riser, we must do a separate load test and in this condition, we must only apply the perpendicular load on insert/fixing itself in the middle of the full height of the step. The area of the load must be 50 millimeters by the width of the inserts and fixings. 

6) Detection of a missing step or pallet: The operation of the escalator is only permitted when the step band is complete. For this purpose, a missing step must be detected by a safety device or function provided at the return station in each drive station. 

The installation of the detection means for this device is not permitted in the straight section between the transitions sections, because this is not a part of the return station.

7) Drive units additional requirements: The drive unit parts such as shafts, gears, and chains with multiple rows are the moving parts and therefore there is a dynamic load applied to them. All of these components have to be securely placed in the truss based on the particular requirements of each part such as the Eurocode standard for trusses, and other related standards for welding and screws.

8) New requirements for the operational brake are as the following: 

It is recommended to operate the brake electrically, e.g. using an inverter, but electromechanical braking must still be used for electrical braking.

When applying the operational brake, there must be no deliberate delay in the process. In case the control system initiates the braking sequence instantly to stop the escalator or moving walk, it is not counted as a deliberate delay.

When electrically braking, after the electrical brake is applied, the power supply to the electromechanical brake must be stopped within a second.

The period of time between the initiation of the electrical braking and the electromechanical brake must not surpass 4 seconds and must be observed by a safety circuit or E/E/PE meeting the SIL2 rating.

Electromechanical brakes must operate instantly; when the speed exceeds 1.2 times of the nominal speed, when an unintentional reversal happens, on braking time, and when other mentioned requirements of the standard are exceeded.

9) According to The requirements for auxiliary brakes, Escalators and moving walks must be equipped with electrical safety devices or functions to detect the release of auxiliary brakes when the escalator or moving walk has been started.

10) There are some requirements for skirt panels in the new version of the standard as the following:

The skirt must be rigid enough and to test this, a single force of 1500 N at right angles must be applied to the skirt including illumination option and other devices (e.g. Skirt Brush), at the weakest point to the surface over a square or round area of 2500 mm2. After the test, it must not move more than 4 millimeters and no permanent deformation must be seen. Also, the skirt must withstand a force of 500N above 25 millimeters from the step nose or the tread surface of the pallets.

11) The updated version of the escalator European standard has added new requirements for skirt brush as the following:

The skirt brush is composed of two parts, a rigid base (Aluminum or Rubber) and a flexible brush. The rigid part makes a flat surface available perpendicular to the skirt panel with a maximum width of 5 millimeters which thereafter is a downward on top and an upward at the bottom on the convex slope. Its shape must have an inclination of 25° in not less than half of the horizontal protrusion of the skirt panel. In the case of a flat surface perpendicular to the skirt panel which is followed by a straight slope with a minimum inclination of 25°, the width of the top is a maximum of 10 millimeters and the width of the bottom platform is a maximum of 5 millimeters. To obtain a coefficient of friction, below the skirt brush must be made of appropriate materials or the appropriate type of lining.

12) To decrease the possibility of entrapment of fingers or hands, the handrail profiles and their guides must be designed accordingly as the following:

  • The handrail must be located a minimum of 80 millimeters horizontally and 25 millimeters vertically away from other objects and surfaces. 

Note: A reduction of 25 millimeters mentioned above is authorized if the vertical distance between the lower edge of the handrail and the closest point of the handrail frame guide is 8 millimeters or more. The lowest point of the handrail frame must be at least 25 millimeters vertically below the lower edge of the handrail and it cannot be horizontally more than the outer edge of the handrail. 

  • The distance between the handrail frame and guide profiles must under no circumstances be wider than 8 millimeters.
  • The handrail width must be between 70 and 100 millimeters. 
  • The distance between the outer edge of the handrail and the edge of the upper inner decking must not be more than 50 millimeters.

13) According to the new requirement for machinery spaces, installing parts in the standing area permanently is only allowed when these parts are located behind rounded corners of a maximum 0.25 meters radius and 0.12 meters above the free-standing area.

14) Requirements related to fire protection are as the following:

To avoid the fire hazard, The permitted materials applied for outer and inner decking, truss, pallets/steps, track system must be at least class C according to EN 13501-1:2007+A1:2009, 11.5. Based on the mentioned standard, a compliance test as well must be undertaken for the materials that are not generally classified. (SBI Test according to EN 13823:2010+A1:2014 [2]) 

This test must be applied for steps and pallets with plastic parts either on the tread surface or on the riser while the step or pallet is in a vertical position where the area with the plastic parts are forming the test surface.  

In a continuous arrangement if the steps are equipped with plastic inserts on the tread surface or on the riser, and also for pallets with plastic inserts in the direction of movement, a test according to EN 13501-1:2007+A1:2009 (SBI Test according to EN 13823:2010+A1:2014) must be considered. This test must be done solely with plastic insert material forming the whole test surface. It should be noted that a continuous configuration involves the gaps between steps and pallets. In other words, these gaps are not considered as interruptions.

15) In the latest version of the EN 115-1:2017, it is mentioned that the electromagnetic compatibility must conform to the requirements of EN 1201:2014 and EN 12016:2013.

16) EN-115-1:2017 has added some modifications with respect to handrail speed deviation. A safety device called “handrail speed monitor” must be provided to monitor the handrail speed and initiate the stopping of an escalator or a moving walk, when the handrail speed deviates more than +15% or -15% of the step or pallet nominal speed within a time frame of 5 to 15 seconds.

17) Regarding the automatic operation of escalators and moving walks in 2-direction-mode; EN 115-1:2017 mentions that moving walks are not allowed to operate in 2-direction-mode. Also, in escalators that operate in both directions, the first person to step on the escalator is considered as the priority and determines the escalator’s direction of movement. In this condition, the mode of operation must be vividly shown to passengers and the direction indicator of the opposite side must indicate “No Entry”.

18) For Manual Emergency Stop device, EN 115-1:2017 mentions that every escalator and moving walk must be equipped with an emergency stop device activated via an actuator that stops the escalator or moving walk during an emergency. The actuator of this safety device must be installed near the landings, and they must be reachable from outside the step/pallet band. If the stop button is placed below half the balustrade height, an additional indicator must be placed on the inner side of the balustrade.

19) About the inspection control of the escalator, the latest version of the standard mentions that inspection control must be activated continuously and concurrently using both hands, one on the direction-control-device and the other on the RUN-control-device.

20) The updated version of the standard has added new requirements for accompanying documents. For example, for manually starting escalators or moving walks, the steps/pallets and landings must be checked for people. Also, escalators and moving walks installed in an area subject to seismic conditions must be checked periodically to make sure that the seismic equipment is working properly. Also, checking whether the escalator or moving walk is operating safely after an earthquake is necessary.

21) About free space for users, the new version of the European standard states that the clear height above the escalator steps or moving walk pallets including the area to the end of the newel and the area available for users at all points must not exceed 2,30 meters. 

A vertical deflector with a minimum height of 0,30 meters without any sharp edges must be installed rigidly at floor intersections or in crisscross arrangements. It should be located above the handrail and be extended to at least 25 millimeters under the lower edge of the handrail to prevent injuries arising from building obstacles. 

An adequate unrestricted area to house all the passengers must be provided at landings of every single escalator or moving walk. The width of the unrestricted area must be at least proportional to the distance between the handrail outer edges as well as 80 millimeters on each side. The depth of the unrestricted area must have a measure of at least 2,50 meters from the end of the balustrade. Decreasing the depth to 2,00 meters is possible if the width of the unrestricted area increases to at least twice the distance between the handrail outer edges together with 80 millimeters on each side. EN 115-1:2017 states the assumption that this area is not affected by other passenger flows inside the building. The required size mentioned in the standard is the minimum permitted size and must be considered for all the cases. The unrestricted area must not be overlapped although a lateral shift is allowed. The surface of this area must be level and flat and a maximum inclination of 6° is allowed. No fixed stair is permitted inside the unrestricted area.

If escalators and moving walks exits are clogged by structural safety equipment such as shutters, fire protection gates, and removable barriers, or if there is no enough exit space between successive escalators or moving walks, an extra stop device must be installed with the following required specifications for emergency situations:

  1. Can be actuated from inside the escalator or moving walk.
  2. Located in a distance between 2,00 meters and 3,00 meters before the comb intersection line,
  3. In a vertical range of 200 millimeters below and 400 millimeters above the handrails from the top of the handrail to the middle of the button.

EN 115-1:2017 has included some measures to prevent the entry of shopping and luggage carts. If there is a possibility of shopping trolleys or luggage carts being carried on escalators or moving walks, necessary measures must be taken to eliminate hazards and the access must be banned.

NOTE: Describing the width of the carts must be undertaken by the owners. This action guarantees that the shopping or luggage carts won’t pass through the balustrade and barrier.

The latest version of the standard has also added instructions regarding fixed guiding barriers and traffic columns. It is said that the fixed guiding barriers and traffic columns (including e.g. control devices and stop devices for emergency situations) in the unrestricted area must not cause or lead to other hazards.

22) For anti-slip design determination of step and pallet tread surfaces, and anti-slip design determination of comb plates and floor plates, EN 115-1:2017 included the anti-slip rating of pallet for outdoor inclined moving walks. It should be noted that the slip resistance level of the material covering the surface must be examined in all directions.

Coverings that comply with at least group R9 are considered anti-slip for installations in general. 

Coverings of escalators and moving walks impacted by rain and snow must comply with assessment group R10. Also, for inclined moving walks, coverings that conform to assessment group R11 must be taken into consideration.

23) Regarding escalators and moving walks installed in seismic environments, the updated version of the European standard has specified the special provisions and safety rules for escalators and moving walks permanently installed in buildings that comply with EN 1998-1:2004 (Eurocode 8). Escalators and moving walks, installed in seismic environments, that fall into this scope of the standard must conform to the related safety requirements and/or protective measures mentioned in EN 115-1:2017, Annex M.

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