Top tips of the week from Richard Jackson

Top tips of the week!
From Richard Jackson, Founder of Gate Safe

Check those safety edges

Gate Safe has received information claiming that in certain circumstances the effectiveness of safety edges can be compromised as a result of a fault between the safety edge controller and the gate controller, resulting in the loss of the safety function. Attached is the technical explanation of the problems but let’s keep it simple, all edges should be checked weekly to ensure that they are working. There is no need for a weekly engineer visit, simply position something in front of the various edges when the gate is operating and make sure that the gate stops and backs off when it comes into contact with the object. Taking the time out do this on a weekly basis will ensure you have a safe gate!

Power outage? Problem sorted!

Here’s a simple yet highly effective response to dealing with the frustrating (and possibly dangerous) problem associated with manually releasing an automatic gate in the event of a power cut. Rather than waste precious time trying to find the manual release keys / key holder, why not supply a neat key safe which contains the keys with every gate sold? The safe can be installed on the post or adjacent to the post and all gate users should be notified of the safe code. That way they will have instant access to the release key if the power fails.

Mind the gap!

Salford City Council has been fined £20,000 after a six-year-old boy with autism and learning difficulties lost the tips of three fingers when his hand became trapped in a school gate in 2012. The incident occurred because there had been a failure to fit a guard over the gate hinges, despite the fact that the risk assessment on the gate had revealed that staff needed to be vigilant and supervise children through the gates. The gap in question reduced from 8mm to nothing … Gate Safe speculates that there are many other gates in operation within a school environment that also feature gaps that reduce enough to represent a significant risk. So our advice to everyone is check those gaps!

However, the blame cannot simply be placed on the school. I did a survey at another school last week and identified an automatic gate that was decidedly unsafe. The school was under the impression that they had been supplied a “new” gate but in reality it was second hand! It would seem that purchasers not only need to spell out that they want a CE marked gate, they also want a newly manufactured one!