Be aware of actions that may lead to assuming responsibility for an unsafe gate…

Recently I carried out an audit for an alarm company on a school gate that they had upgraded and although there were a couple of minor issues, the gate had been well installed and was much safer than most that I see.

There were finger guards around the hinges, the ram at the top of the gate was out of the way of little fingers and the gate also featured pressure edges and photo cells. So all in all the alarm company had demonstrated a good level of understanding!

Walking back to the car I was chatting with the engineer and commented on another pair of gates on the site that had clearly not been installed to the same high standard. I mentioned that I hoped that whoever had fitted the new intercom was aware that in effect they had assumed responsibility for the safety of the gates. Upon hearing this, the colour drained from the engineer’s face and it became quite apparent that he had fitted the intercom and had not realised the serious implications of his actions.

I am sure that the alarm company will do the right thing and contact the school to raise its concerns regarding the safety of the gate, but I wonder how many alarm or access control companies fall into the same trap and are leaving themselves potentially liable for prosecution in the event of an accident?

By Richard Jackson, Founder Gate Safe