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August 13, 2013

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Majority of powered gates pose serious safety risk, say specialists

More than two-thirds of all automated gates installed in the UK are not fully compliant with relevant safety legislation, according to research from the Door & Hardware Federation (DHF).

The findings come from the Federation’s Powered Gate Group, which was set up at the request of the HSE following the deaths of two children in accidents involving automated gates.

The Group’s members — comprising UK manufacturers, suppliers and installers of powered gates and associated equipment — have been inspecting automatic gates at domestic, industrial and commercial locations and found numerous safety faults and failings. These include:

  • a lack of, or inadequate, safety devices — equipment designed to automatically halt gate movement if a pedestrian is detected;
  • under-specified motors and other items of equipment that could impair the performance of the gate;
  • a lack of essential safety paperwork, including risk assessments, declarations of conformity and force-test results;
  • a lack of a guide for safe use of the gate (user-operating instructions); and
  • no CE mark, which is legally required under the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008.

Commenting on the findings, chair of the Powered Gate Group of the DHF Andy Holz said: “It’s clear to us that unsafe installations are still being carried out by unqualified installers and gate companies that are quite willing to take dangerous short-cuts in both gate manufacture and installation.

“It’s vital that householders and those responsible for the installation of powered gates at industrial and commercial premises — architects, building owners and facilities managers — are aware of the dangers of using untrained installers and insist on choosing specialist qualified powered-gate companies to carry out the work.”

More information on the Powered Gate Group and a list of its members can be found at

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