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Gate Safety: Complying with the Machine Directive 2006

As a gate owner it your responsibility to ensure that your gates are well maintained, and meet the recognised safety requirements. In the unfortunate instance that an accident did occur then you could be liable for prosecution.

Gates and Safety: Installation

When purchasing your gates, ensure that there is no more than 100mm gap present. This would be between post and gate, gate and ground and the gaps between railings.

No person should be able to reach through the gates and touch the control panel or isolation switch.

An isolation switch, shutting down the whole system, has to be fitted by law. This must be placed within 1m of control box and out of reach from the outside of the property.

Always install two sets of safety equipment…

To comply with the Machine Directive 2006, two separate safety systems should be fitted with your gates.

  • Safety edges – A Category 3 Safety Edge is a rubber edge which is continually monitored and designed to override the gate controls if an obstacle is detected.
  • Safety Beams – These units are installed opposite each other, generally at knee height, and send an infrared beam across the opening gap. If the beam is broken whilst the gates in motion, they will automatically stop movement.
    Did you know… A set of safety Beams can be installed both inside and outside of the electric gates covering the entrance and opening sweep. In this case, it could be classed as two sets of safety.
  • Safety Loops – This is a loop of cable fitted beneath the driveway surface, designed to detect metal mass, such as a vehicle. These would be unsuitable for pedestrian safety detection.
  • Safe Coder – This informs the control board of the gate position at all times. If the gate were to come against resistance i.e. person, vehicle, wind etc, the control board receives a difference signal from the encoder and reverses the direction of the travelling gate.

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Gate Safety & Children

It is important that you have sufficient safety equipment on your gates. This is not only to protect your vehicles but also visitors, should the gates malfunction. There have been incidences of children dying from tragic accidents involving electric gates.

Having gates at the front of your property can be an ideal solution for keeping children & dogs safe from the road; however a gate system is classed as machinery and should be treated as such.

Service & Force testing

It is important that your gates are maintained regularly to ensure that all equipment is fully function and does not show any signs of wear and tear.
Manual release mechanisms should also be tested, making sure than they are well lubricated and do not seize.

The force generated by a gate as it comes into contact with an obstacle should not exceed the values in Annex A of BS EN 12453:2001. This can be tested with a Force Tester during regular maintenance. Recommended once a year.

If you have any questions, please feel free to call us. 01425 475758

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