DDA Regulations for Passenger Lifts

The DDA (Disability Discrimination Act) is intended to ensure that passenger-carrying lifts are suitable for independent use by wheelchair users and can be more comfortably used by hearing and sight impaired persons.

The act does not differentiate between employees and members of the public as failure to apply the act may mean that you are precluding the employment of disabled persons. We can provide recommendations and advice on all aspects of this with respect to new and existing lifts.

In general, these amendments are to ensure that passenger-carrying lifts are suitable for independent use for wheelchair users and can be more comfortably used by hearing and sight impaired persons. Adequate space must also be available in the lift car for wheelchair users to travel with helpers or other passengers.

In general terms, any complant lift must be provided with the following:

  • The doors must be fully automatic
  • The lift door entrance width must be a minimum of 800mm
  • The highest car and landing button must be no more than 1200mm from floor level
  • The pushbuttons must have tactile or Braille surfaces and make a sound when operated
  • An audio (vocal) floor announcer/floor indicator is required
  • There must be a mirror on the rear of the lift car
  • There must be adequate illumination
  • The lift car must have vocal communication with the landing area or have an external phone line

There are also lifts specifically for disabled access use only. These are designed to fit in a limited space and are generally short travel. They can run from a single-phase power supply. The speed is restricted to “very slow” around 0.08 m/s to 0.15 m/s. These include:

  • Dedicated Disabled Access Lift - fully enclosed shaft and car
  • Dedicated Disabled Access Lift – semi enclosed car, fully enclosed shaft
  • Stairlifts with chairs or platforms fitted
  • Vertical short travel platform lifts semi enclosed
  • Steplifts

When these platform lifts are in the down position they include an area which forms a stair. This can save on access space under certain circumstances.