ASME 17.1 is the "Safety Code for Elevators and Escalators." This includes the safety code requirements for elevators, escalators, dumbwaiters, moving walks, material lifts, and dumbwaiters with automatic transfer devices. The Canadian Standards Association standard, CSA B44 is harmonized with ASME 17.1, producing a single elevator and escalator safety code for North America.
The ASME 17.1 elevator and escalator safety code covers the design, construction, operation, inspection, testing, maintenance, alteration, and repair of hoisting and lowering mechanisms, equipped with a car or platform, when that hoisting mechanism is located in or adjacent to a structure. This includes:
- Power driven stairways and walkways
- Escalators and moving walks
- Hoisting and lowering mechanisms
- Material lifts
The ASME A17.1 elevator and escalator safety code does not cover personnel hoists, which are covered by ANSI A10.4. Material hosts are covered by ANSI A10.5 and stairway chair lifts, used to move wheelchairs up and down stairways in homes, are covered by ASME A18.1.
ASME 17.1 has nine major sections:
- Part 1 – General and introductory information
- Part 2 - Electric elevators
- Part 3 - Hydraulic elevators.
- Part 4 - Elevators other than electric or hydraulic elevators
- Part 5 - Special application elevators
- Part 6 - Escalators, moving walks and people movers
- Part 7 – Dumbwaiters and material lifts
- Part 8 - Other general requirements for elevators and escalators
- Part 9 - Reference Codes, Standards, and Specifications
What Does ANSI A17.1 Cover?
ASME 17.1 Part 1 describes what this code covers and does not cover, and provides definitions.
ASME 17.1 Part 2 proves an example of the type of information covered by the rest of this safety code. It covers the design and construction of electric elevators including fire resistive construction, enclosures, construction of floors, pits, counterweights, supports, access ways and work areas, description of other equipment that may be installed in hoistways, labeling of components and it specifies operating parameters.
The following is an example of design and operating specifications include in ASME 17.1 2.12.5 Restricted Opening of Hoistway or Car Doors
Hoistway and car doors of passenger elevators shall conform to 188.8.131.52 through 184.108.40.206.
220.127.116.11 When a car is outside the unlocking zone, the hoistway doors or car doors shall be so arranged that the hoistway doors or car doors cannot be opened more than 100 mm (4 in.) from inside the car.
18.104.22.168 When the car doors are so arranged that they cannot be opened when the car is outside the unlocking zone, the car doors shall be openable from outside the car without the use of a special tool(s).
22.214.171.124 The doors shall be openable from within the car (see 126.96.36.199) when the car is within the unlocking zone.
Overall ANSI A17.1 has 531 pages, much more than can be summarized in any online article. The code is very specific in many areas of elevator and escalator design, installation and operation, so it is critical to obtain a copy of the code and be familiar with it should you be involved with the installation, maintenance or repair of elevators or escalators.
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