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Stairlift Safety Features

British Standards: BS5776:1996
This standard is primarily concerned with stairlifts installed in domestic premises in the United Kingdom. I'm not going to bore you to death with BS standards, though i could and so could anyone else who has studied the Stairlift Technology course at the University of Northampton 70% of the course seems to cover the BS5776 standard

Note: codes of practice and technical specifications are updated occasionally. These references may be out of date by the time they are read and are shown as examples

Stairlift Safety Features
In a nutshell any stairlift manufacturer installer in the UK has to conform to the BS5776 standard. Obviously some stairlift manufactures use this as an extra sales pitch? Our stairlifts incorporate an OSG Safety Gear Mechanism? Our stairlifts have safety edges on the carriage and footplate bla bla bla...

The good news is! If your living in the UK you can be assured that your stairlift is completely safe if purchased from a reputable company and installed by qualified stairlift engineers. Lets have a look at the standard features you should get from any stairlift supplier

Stairlift OSG overspeed governor (BS5776)
This device monitors the speed of a stairlift! Typical travel speed for domestic straight stairlifts range between 0.07- 0.15 meters per second (30 feet per minute 0.34 miles per hour) Should the OSG mechanism detect any over-speed the centrifugal force causes the osg cams to fly out and in turn release the safety gear jaw which instantaneously clamps to the stairlift rail and disconnects the motor drive power bringing the stairlift to an abrupt holt

Stairlift Safety Edges (BS5776)
To conform to BS5776 all stairlift should have safety edges on the stairlift carriage! Top of the carriage / Up direction and Bottom of the carriage / Down Direction see Fig1A

When buying Stairlifts ensure it has the standard Safety Features

Footplate Safety Edges
Safety Edge switches protect the stairlift user and non users from accidental entrapment of the footplate. Should any of the safety edges be operated in any direction the stairlift will automatically stop. The stairlift user will not be able to continue in the desired direction until the obstruction has been removed. The stairlift will allow the user to return to the original traveling direction Top or Bottom whichever the case may be? See Fig1A

Stairlift Seatbelts (BS5776)
All stairlifts must have a seatbelt fitted to comply with BS5776 Standards. Point to remember! during my years as a stairlift engineer i have been asked to attend households where the stairlift user has claimed to have fallen off / Out of the stairlift? On all occasions the stairlifts were fitted with seatbelts! Obviously the stairlift users were not wearing their seatbelt. Trying to claim compensation against anyone is a non starter (Fact if your wearing the provided seatbelt you can not fall off) See Fig2A

Stairlift Seat Swivel
Seat swivel allows easy dismount without the need to twist the body or legs.
Once the stairlift seat is swiveled it automatically locks into position allowing the user to safely dismount from the stairlift. The stairlift drive circuitry is isolated when the seat is in the swivel position. The stairlift will not move until the seat swivel is locked back into its safe traveling mode See Fig3A

     
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