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Voluntary Standards Cover the Spectrum: from Explosives to Elevators and Escalators

In an effort to communicate the vital role that standards play in daily life, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) will publish, on an ongoing basis, a series of snapshots of the diverse standards initiatives undertaken in the global and national standards arena, many of which are performed by ANSI members and ANSI-accredited standards developers. Two of the latest selections follow:

The earliest recorded use of explosives in demolition dates back to 17th century Europe; in the United States, the first such use began in San Francisco in the early 1850s. Fortunately, today's construction workers have the advantage of advancements in technology, safety requirements, and standards to ensure they are protected from potential life-threatening dangers present during demolition operations.

The American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) recently revised a standard for construction and demolition operations, ANSI/ASSE A10.7-2011, Safety Requirements for Transportation, Storage, Handling and Use of Commercial Explosives and Blasting Agents. ANSI/ASSE A10.7-2011 provides best practices for use of commercial explosives, guiding their storage, handling, and use in construction and demolition environments. The standard does not apply to pyrotechnics, small-arms ammunition, or explosive power packs in the form of explosive-activated or explosive-charged construction devices.

ASSE, an ANSI organizational member and accredited standards developer, is the oldest and largest professional safety organization committed to protecting people, property, and the environment. Its more than 32,000 members manage, supervise, and consult on safety, health, and environmental issues in industry, insurance, government, and education.

Elevators and Escalators
In the United States, an estimated 900,000 elevators and 35,000 escalators serve on average 32,000 people per year. ASME A17.3-2011, Safety Code for Existing Elevators and Escalators (Includes Requirements for Electric and Hydraulic Elevators and Escalators), is a recently published standard intended to protect these riders.

The updated standard from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) supersedes the 2008 edition and is intended to serve as the basis for state and local jurisdictional authorities in adopting retroactive requirements for existing elevators and escalators. ASME A17.3 provides safety requirements for use by architects, engineers, insurance companies, manufacturers, contractors, building owners, and others. A member of ASME's suite of A17 standards for elevator and escalator safety, ASME A17.3 guides the safe installation, inspection, testing, operation, and/or insurance of existing elevators and escalators.

ASME, an ANSI organizational member and accredited standards developer, is a non-profit professional organization promoting the art, science, and practice of mechanical and multidisciplinary engineering and allied sciences. ASME develops codes and standards that enhance public safety, and enables learning and technical exchange opportunities benefiting the global engineering and technology community.


Jana Zabinski

Senior Director, Communications & Public Relations


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Beth Goodbaum

Journalist/Communications Specialist


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