Tragic Story – Gate Safety!
The following gate safety demonstration has been performed under the supervision of our trained engineers.
We strongly suggest you do not try this on your own electric gate system.
On 13 April 2006, a nine year old boy called Jason Keet was sadly killed by an automated gate, when he was trapped in the gap between the gate post and the rear style of the leaf as the gate opened. This was caused by the gap reducing as the leaf moves towards the post.
All Jason did was to lean through the gap and press the gate open button on the other side, something that had been common practice. Unfortunately, Jason did not move out of the way fast enough and the gate crushed him.
You will graphically see in the video just how much power a gate does exert when in operation.
When carrying out a risk assessment to improve gate safety, this major area of concern is checked for the following :-
Firstly, the gap is measured when the gate is fully opened and again when closed. The gap should never be less than 25 mm or greater than 100 mm.
Secondly, the gap ratio is calculated, as it should not change by more than 20%, even it the gaps fall within the tolerances above.
Imagine if you place your arm through the gap, possibly to enter the gate code in from the other side and then the gate opens, this will trap your arm.
Almost certainly, the forces will be above the recommended safety levels at the hinge area due to the leverage effect, even if the gate has passed its force test.
Also, if there is no protection in this area it will cause severe injury.
To demonstrate this we performed two tests using fruits placed in this gap.
The first, a cucumber (to mimic a finger or child’s arm) demonstrated how tight the gap can become when the gate is opening and the damage that can be caused.
The second, using a melon (to simulate a child’s head) was a more devastating example, showing the strength of the gates if the safety precautions are not adhered to. We also tested the same fruit under the weight of an 18 stone adult as a comparison.
Call us today to arrange a risk assessment and ensure your electric gates are operating safely.