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Experience the all-in-one equipment management platform for users, inspectors and suppliers of loose lifting equipment.


Experience the all-in-one equipment management platform for users, inspectors and suppliers of loose lifting equipment.


Experience the all-in-one equipment management platform for users, inspectors and suppliers of loose lifting equipment.

hook - a quick guide to LOLER

A quick guide to LOLER


If you work, or plan to work, using lifting equipment in Great Britain, you’ve probably heard of LOLER – and hopefully, you have an idea of what it entails. But how well do you really know the regulations – and how good are your routines and systems at streamlining your organization’s LOLER compliance?

Let’s try to give you a brief and simple walkthrough of the most important points!

This quick guide will take you through some key terms and concepts in LOLER and what the regulations cover. For a complete understanding of LOLER and how it applies to your business or organization, we do, however, recommend contacting the LOLER competent authority in your area.

So, first things first: The Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations (LOLER) exist to make sure that all lifting equipment is used safely. Any organization working in Great Britain or on vessels in British waters that use lifting equipment must comply with LOLER, which comes under the U.K. Health and Safety at Work Act. The regulations provide a framework for a safe work environment and are enforced by British health and safety inspectors.

Key Terms and Concepts

Competent authority
A minister, government department, or other authority who issues regulations, orders, or other lawful instructions.

Competent person
A person with the necessary knowledge and experience to examine the lifting equipment, detect defects or weaknesses, and determine if it’s safe to continue using. The person should be objective and impartial, meaning they’re usually an external contractor.

CE marking
The CE marking is a Declaration of Conformity (see below) indicating that a product meets EU safety, health, and environmental protection requirements. After Brexit, the CE marking will be gradually replaced by the U.K. Conformity Assessed (UKCA) mark in the U.K. From 1st January 2023, you must use the UKCA mark in the U.K. The UKCA mark will not, however, be recognized in the EU market.

Declaration of Conformity (DoC)
A DoC certifies that a product has been tested by an accredited laboratory or test facility to make sure it is fully operational and safe before sale. The official DoC is a record of all evaluations done before product approval, making it easy to track responsibility.

Lifting accessories
Equipment used to attach a load to lifting machinery. This equipment must be thoroughly examined every six months.

The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations 1998, also known as PUWER, are typically used together with LOLER. PUWER relates to all types of work equipment used in business operations, while LOLER relates specifically to lifting equipment.

Safe working load (SWL)
The maximum load the lifting equipment can safely lift. All lifting equipment and accessories must be marked to indicate their SWL.

Thorough examination
A detailed examination by a competent person. LOLER requires that lifting equipment is thoroughly examined before its first use, after repairing or replacing an essential component, and at least every 12 months.

U.K. Health and Safety at Work Act (HSW Act)
Also referred to as HSWA, the HSW Act, the 1974 Act, or HASAWA, is the primary legislation for occupational health and safety in Great Britain.

Who does LOLER apply to?

The regulations apply to people and companies who work in Great Britain (including British waters) who own or use lifting equipment, lifting accessories, and items of loose gear. This includes all businesses and organizations with employees who use lifting equipment, whether or not the equipment is owned by them.

What equipment is covered by LOLER?

LOLER applies to any equipment used at work for lifting or lowering loads, including attachments used for anchoring, fixing, or supporting it. The regulations also include lifting accessories, such as chains, slings, eyebolts, etc., and employees’ own equipment.

What does LOLER require?

The regulations require you to make sure that:

  • the lifting equipment is strong enough, stable enough, and suitable for the intended use
  • the equipment is positioned or installed to prevent injury
  • the equipment is clearly marked with the necessary information about safe use
  • lifting operations are safely planned, supervised, and carried out by competent people
  • equipment used for lifting people is marked as such
  • the equipment is thoroughly examined at the required time
  • a report is submitted to the employer after an examination so that the appropriate action can be taken

How often should you inspect lifting equipment?

Lifting equipment must go through a thorough examination by a competent person:

  • before first use (unless it has a valid Declaration of Conformity made less than 12 months earlier)
  • every 12 months – or every 6 months for lifting accessories and for equipment that is used to lift people
  • after repair or replacement of parts 
  • whenever it is removed and refitted to the original chassis
  • following any accident or dangerous event
  • if there is any significant change in the usage conditions
  • if the equipment has not been used for a long time

In some circumstances, the examinations should be more thorough and/or frequent if, for example, the equipment:

  • is used in extreme temperatures
  • is used in a corrosive environment
  • is in particularly heavily use
  • could lead to catastrophic events if it failed

What documentation does LOLER require?

The regulations require the following documentation:

  • A Declaration of Conformity (DoC) 
  • Records of thorough examinations, where the 11 items listed in Schedule 1 of LOLER must be included
  • A report of defects provided to both the owner and user of the equipment and the enforcing authority


As you’ve probably figured out by now, LOLER covers a lot of areas, and there are quite a few things to keep in mind if you want to stay compliant. Using Onix Work gives you better control and makes the compliance processes easier and more efficient. We make sure that all required documentation is created, signed, distributed, and stored according to LOLER.

Onix also has the required security measures for electronic documentation that make sure that reports can’t be tampered with.

If you are interested in learning more about how Onix Work can help your business stay LOLER compliant, please contact us – we’re happy to help!

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