It is hugely important to install appropriate safety systems on all automated gates. Compliance testing to the correct standard applies to ALL new automatic gates installed and also should be carried out to retro-fit installations on existing gates.
ID Security offer a free no obligation quotation to carry out the force tests as required and, if acceptable, will then carry out the tests and provide a written report with force test results and a quotation to carry out any remedial works in order to bring the gates into line with current legislation.
Safety is the very highest priority when installing an automatic gate system and ID Security Systems take this very seriously. It is all too tempting to cut corners for the sake of financial savings, but if you do the consequences could be disastrous.
Some installers are choosing to offer safety equipment as an optional extra when quoting and installing automated gates. Sadly in too many instances, the lack of appropriate safety and end user training has had tragic consequences. Many automated gates installed before regulations were introduced were installed without any safety. Many of the potential hazards that these historical installations present can be minimised by upgrading or retro fitting modern safety devices to work with the existing automation systems. If you are considering installing automated gates, it can be tempting to choose the installer offering a few hundred euros cost saving by installing a system with minimal or no safety at all and thinking “it’ll be alright, what could possibly happen?” If a gate hits or crushes a vehicle it can be repaired, if it traps or crushes a child the consequences can be tragic.
A competent installation company will visit your site and carry out a Risk Analysis. As well as assessing the practicalities of the installation, this is to assess the potential hazards that could be introduced by the automated gates. The level of risk for each hazard is assessed as a combination of the seriousness of the hazard and the effects and possibility that the hazardous situation could occur. The seriousness of the hazard is specific to the installation and the users of the gate or premises.
For example if a two metre high solid boarded timber gate were being installed at a retirement home then the risk of collision with a person is more likely and the potential consequences more severe than if a 1m high 5 bar gate were being installed on the entrance to a paddock. Once the potential hazards have been assessed, the installer can then select the appropriate automation equipment and necessary safety devices to minimise or eliminate the potential impact of those hazards. Some of the key hazards to be assessed as part of a risk assessment when installing automated gates are:
During opening and closing there is a risk that the gates could collide with a person, vehicle, animal or other object . The risk of collision differs depending on how the gates are commanded to move, the type and height of gate e.g. solid boarded or open railing, and the users/ visitors to the property e.g. young children, elderly and disabled typically are unable to react and move out of the path of a moving gate quickly enough. All of these factors influence the type and level of safety required.
During the opening and closing phase, especially with a short sliding gate with finials, there is a risk of a person’s clothing getting caught on the gate and being dragged by the gate as if they were on a conveyor belt. The likely hood of this occurring becomes greater if the gate is installed on the boundary of a property and a public space.
The potential for crushing can be to vehicles, people, pets or other objects and can come from several places on any single installation. Swing gates present the potential for crushing as the two gate leaves close together, between the gate and posts at the hinges, between the underside of the gates and the road surface has the potential to crush feet. If the gates open against a solid surface such as a fence or a brick wall there is a potential to crush if the gap between the gate and the solid object is insufficient.
During opening and closing, gates have the power and potential to push a person, animal or small object. This could result in a person being knocked over. As with a collision hazard, The risk differs depending on how the gates are commanded to move, the type and height of gate e.g. solid boarded or open railing, and the users/ visitors to the property e.g. young children, elderly and disabled typically are unable to react and move out of the path of a moving gate quickly enough. All of these factors influence the type and level of safety required.
This is a significant hazard to be considered when installing sliding gates. The potential occurs when the gate passes any fixed vertical object such as a post or the bars of railings. If an object such as a person’s arm were to get trapped between the gate and the post and the gate were to continue moving then the shearing forces could causes an injury such as a broken arm or at worst with a very large gate it could act like guillotine blades. There are simple and effective ways to minimise or in many cases eliminate this risk such as using mesh panels behind railings to stop arms being passed between the bars.
There are two primary trapping hazards: 1) Where a space is created big enough for a person or animal to stand behind the gate when it is opened but without any means of escape if the gate didn’t close. Another hazard commonly found in blocks of flats is where the gate opens onto the door of a bin store. When the gate is opened, if a person was in the bin store they would be trapped as the door cannot be opened until the gate is closed. 2)Trapping of persons, or body parts in the automation mechanism or in the fabric of the gate. This is much more serious and potentially dangerous of the two.
If you have read this far, you may be wondering why anyone would consider installing such a potentially dangerous machine!
Please be assured that with the correct site survey, risk assessment and subsequent informed choice of automation equipment and safety devices, your gates will provide years of reliable, safe service. The major automation equipment manufacturers continue to develop new and improved equipment with enhanced obstacle detection and safety devices to enable safer automation solutions to be supplied and installed. The following two pages have been taken from the handover documentation that ID Security Systems provides with all installations and shows pictorially some of the potential hazards that have been discussed previously.
When your electric gate is correctly installed by trained professionals, it is guaranteed to give you many years of reliable, secure and safe operation. Automated gates do pose a potential risk due to their mechanical construction though. To ensure your property and family are safe, gold approved installers ID Security Systems fit automatic gates to all the relevant Irish and European laws standards, including the machine directives.
To help make your gate as safe as possible, all ID Security Systems installers undergo vigorous training procedures within the company. BFT, FAAC and Fadini products are guaranteed to meet the current European safety standards.
Making your gate safe involves a combination of elements; precise installation, correct wiring, installing integrated safety systems and comprehensive testing. Our vastly experienced members of staff at ID Security Systems will be able to advise you on the safety features you require depending on your situation.
These represent an excellent form of positive “beam” protection around the gateway and on wing type gates they are normally installed in two sets; one just in front of the gate line and one just inside the arc-line of travel described by the swinging wing of each gate. In this way, a safety zone will have been created, so that on the automatically timed closure of the electric gates, if a vehicle is still within the area of travel of the gates, it will prohibit the gates closing and furthermore, if a “beam” should be broken after the automatic closing has begun, it will re-open and hold the gateway open until the obstruction is clear.
ASO safety edges are soft profile sections of collapsible ABS material that can help to protect the leading edges of opening gates. When the ASO Safety Edges comes into contact with an obstruction, it triggers the gates to stop or reverse their operation, so the object or person who was within the gates movement is safe and undamaged or unhurt!
ASO Safety Edges are sensitive along its entire length, to protect against contact with any obstacle, large or small. The exclusive patented system makes it possible for the entire edge to warp, sideways and front ways, to ensure reverse movement at the slightest contact. The size of the edge and its warping structure accurately detects the obstacle. An additional guarantee against blows and crushing. These safety edges are monitored by the control panel 24 hours a day therefore if the safety edge becomes damaged the control panel will be alerted and the gates will not operate until the problem has been rectified. Particularly useful for sliding gates and in situation where pets or children could get into the gate movement area and avoid the safety beams. The ASO Safety Edges can be combined with a system of wireless connections, eliminating complicated and unsightly wiring.
Buried under your driveway, induction loops are made up of a roughly rectangular shaped wire loop, laid repeatedly around the rectangle to create a coil. A miniature magnetic induction field is created above, so that when a metallic vehicle passes over this magnetic induction field, its presence is detected. This can then be used to trigger the gate to open, or can be used as an additional safety device to prevent the gates from closing on your vehicle.
When used as a switching device, induction loops are usually installed on busy, accessible gateways to allow freedom of vehicle movement without the need to push any sort of button. As a result, they are usually used to trigger the gates from inside the property.Set Up 1 – Barred Sliding Electric Gate, Slides through a stationary frame in which the control and motor are installed. Safety edges are installed on the leading, closing & opening edges (up to a height of 2.5M ). To prevent shearing in the stationary frame safety edges are required to be installed on both sides of the frame. Other edges may need to be protected depending on gate design.
Set Up 2 – This sliding electric gate has been finger meshed, boarded or in-filled to prevent shearing as the gate slides through the stationary frame. The mesh in-fill used must be fine enough to prevent trapping of body parts (30mm x 30mm) and the gap between the gate itself and the frame as it passes through must be less than 100mm to comply with regulations. Safety edges are installed on the leading closing & opening edges (up to a height of 2.5M where required). Other edges may need to be protected depending on gate design.
Set Up 3 – A barred sliding electric gate moving through a stationary frame behind a wall. We require safety edges to be installed on the leading closing & opening edges (up to a height of 2.5M where required). To protect against shearing on the stationary frame we require safety edges to be installed on both sides of the frame (and in both opening & closing directions). A safety edge needs to be installed on the outside wall to prevent shearing when closing. Other edges may need to be protected depending on gate design.