> Officially accredited by ANSI as AECO for North America
In March 2009, the Liftinstituut was officially appointed as an Accredited Elevator/Escalator Certification Organization (AECO) by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) (ID#0842). As a result, Liftinstituut is qualified to certify elevators, escalators and components for the North American market according to code ASME A17.7/CSA B44.7.
As in Europe, manufacturers can now deviate from ASME A17.1/CSA B44 as long as the product is completely safe, supported by a risk analysis and assessed by an AECO. This development benefits manufacturers by encouraging innovation. For example, you can now use plastic buffers instead of steel springs and hydraulic buffers as described in A17.1. As a result, buffers can be much more compact. The elevator well can also be shallower. What’s more, plastic buffers don’t rust.
Bridging Europe and North America
Certification according to ASME A17.7/CSA B44.7 helps create more market opportunities for lift manufacturers in both Europe and North America. As a result, they increasingly choose certifications based on both European and North American standards.
In this way, the North American approach gets closer and closer to the European approach established earlier with the Lift Directive. In Europe, risk evaluation and resulting measures are parts of product design and certification. This is the case when design deviates from the harmonized lift standards EN81-1 and EN81-2. This way of working is not unique to the lift industry. For years, it has been common practice in other business sectors in Europe and North America.
From Europe to North America
If you’re a European manufacturer wanting to operate in the North American market, A17.7 can help you launch products faster. Instead of the usual four to five years’ wait, you can often launch a product within six months. But you are strongly recommended to conduct due diligence before making any product alterations and saddling yourself with a lot of e-mail correspondence and paperwork. The North American and European markets are quite different, so you should be absolutely sure there’s a need for your product before proceeding further.