Blockchain for Lift Maintenance and Security Audit

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

The European Lifts Directive 2014/33/EU of February 2014 seeks the harmonisation of Member States laws regarding lifts and safety components. It applies to all economic operators intervening in the supply and distribution chain, encouraging them to take appropriate measures to ensure that they only place on the market lifts and make available on the market safety components for lifts which are in conformity with this Directive.

Royal Decree (RD) 203/2016 of 20 May, which establishes the safety requirements for the commercialization and safety components for lifts, transposes into a Spanish law the aforementioned Directive.

This rule specifies that each lift must be accompanied by instructions in the form of documents, one of which must be a logbook, in which repairs and, where appropriate, periodic checks may be noted.

In addition, according to the RD 203/2016, the maintenance companies are obliged to provide information on the traceability of safety components, and must incorporate in the maintenance registry the characteristics of those elements. The inclusion of this information in the Maintenance Registry will be made periodically.

Installers must also keep a copy of the certificate of conformity. This is issued by the body responsible for verifying the conformity of the lift with the applicable essential health and safety requirements, and must be kept for ten years together with the technical documentation.

In the installation and maintenance of a lift, a group of different actors are involved: installers, maintenance companies, control bodies, communities/users, etc. And they all need to share information and common data regarding the lift in a permanent, secure and reliable way. For this reason, it seems appropriate to use blockchain technologies as a way to keep a common distributed, decentralized and synchronized registry among all the system stakeholders.

This registration in blockchain will not only comply with the requirements of the regulations, but it will also enable greater transparency and trust between the parties involved. For example, a situation that requires mutual trust between client and contractor is the maintenance management of the lift. There may be distrust on the part of the client regarding the adequate provision of the service and billing thereof. Also the contractor may distrust about the proper use of the lift by the residents of the communal building.

So detecting the incidents as they occur and register them alongside their resolution through a blockchain platform can be of help to resolve any type of conflict. Moreover it could improve response times, automate certain processes and tasks, even streamline administrative procedures such as payments and receipts.

This is why CTIC has developed LiftsOnTheBlock, a blockchain-based distributed application (Dapp) that can be used to comply with legislation about lifts, ease any dispute between parts, and even prevent fraud. This is our second Dapp developed under the BCCB project, being the first CarTrustChain, aimed at preventing the odometer fraud in vehicles.

The lift itself, having the appropriate sensors and hardware with Internet access, communicates with the Smart Contract at the core of LiftsOnTheBlock. Thus, the lift’s incidents are recorded into the unbreakable registry provided by the blockchain infrastructure.

LiftsOnTheBlock records various issues affecting a lift during its usual operation, among others:

  • a continued blocking of the lift caused by some fault or a door that has been improperly closed;

  • an overweight due to an excessive number of people or heavy objects (building materials, furnishings...) in the cabin;

  • a dim light due to reduction of lamps’ performance or their physical failure.

By means of this Dapp an authorized third party, such as the maintenance company or an inspection agency, can check the current status of the lift on the blockchain, query the history of incidents, and of course register servicing tasks that solve pending issues or planned maintenance.

Since the beginning of 2016, CTIC has been working on the BCCB project, a space for experimentation with blockchain technologies. If you are interested in more details about the different applications of this important innovation and how to approach them, please contact us.