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Automatic Gates Force Testing to BS EN 12453:2001 Machine Directives

ADS Fabrications is serious when it comes to safety of the installation of all our products. We promote safety aspects wherever possible and endeavour to provide our clients with an end product which complies with the guidelines and regulations of the industry standards.

Following some recent deaths involving automatic gates in the UK there has been an increase in awareness in the safety of the design, installation and use of automatic gates.

After investigations were carried out on the incidents the HSE have issued the following bulletins:

Any gate system that has been incorrectly or poorly installed can be a serious hazard. The duty for compliance is with the person responsible for the use of the gate.

Automatic Gates and Traffic Barriers must comply with the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008 as a legal requirement. European Standards BS EN 12445:2001 and BS EN 12453:2001 can be used to prove compliance with these Regulations. The standards describe the key requirements for installation, testing and on-going compliance of automatic gate systems.

The standards are designed to protect you, the end user, from risks associated with entrapment between parts of a moving swing or sliding gate.

Key Requirements for the safety of automatic gates as stated by BS EN 12453:2001

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  • Define areas of crushing, shearing and draw in on gates (see diagrams)
  • Stipulates a maximum of 400N of crushing force allowed before gate must start to reverse in these areas. Areas outside of this are allowed up to 1400N.
  • States the force exerted on contact must begin to reduce within 750 milliseconds to below 150N.
  • Defines that a danger area is considered to exist when a gap between the gate and a stationary object reduces to 50cm or below.
  • Requires selected force limitation technology to protect danger areas of gate fully up to a height of 2.5 metres on both sliding and swing gates.
  • Requires that the gate must be equipped with an emergency release system. Users must be trained in how to operate the system.

Another key to compliance with the law is risk assessment, which includes identifying the hazards, estimating the severity and likelihood of each hazard, followed by an evaluation to determine whether each hazard is adequately controlled and, if it is not, what further action needs to be taken to control the risk. In addition to risk assessment, preventative maintenance and force testing are strongly recommended.

Force Testing for Gates and Barriers (annually)

It is essential for automated gates and barriers to be force tested to ensure that the pressures exerted are within acceptable safe limits as defined in the relevant Regulation. All new gate and barrier installations and any retrofit installations are required to undergo a documented Force Test and Risk Assessment. The documentation will assist you, the end user, in meeting your Health and Safety obligations.

ADS Fabrications offer a Force Testing service carried out by our skilled engineers. A specialist force tester is used for measuring the forces generated by automatic gates and traffic barriers.

safety-2 safety-3This instrument provides a printed test report to prove that the measurements pass or fail and that they have been made in accordance to BS EN12445:2001.
Automatic Gates and Traffic Barriers must comply with the Supply of Machinery (Safety) Regulations 2008 as a legal
requirement. European Standards BS EN 12445:2001 and BS EN 12453:2001 can be used to prove compliance with these Regulations. The standards describe the key requirements for installation, testing and on-going compliance of automatic gate systems. The standards are designed to protect you, the end user, from risks associated with entrapment between parts of a moving swing or sliding gate.
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Key Requirements for Force Testing as per Safety Standard BS EN12455:2001

  • Defines force testing requirement points on sliding and swing gates, please note that the area designated for testing on swing gates when opening only exists when a gate opens within 500mm of a wall, fence or other object in the gates travel
  • Test points are horizontally 500mm, 300mm, 50mm from stop post
  • Vertically 300mmm from top of gate, 50mm from bottom & halfway between these points
  • Each test point is measured 3 times
  • The average value is then calculated from these results and submitted as a PASS or FAIL

Arrange to have your Gates and Barriers Force Tested today!!

Contact ADS Fabrications to arrange a Force Test on your Gates or Barriers today. Prices below are per Gate/Barrier; however, discounts can be given to multiple installs on the same site.

If you are an installation company of Gate or Barrier Automation and wish to have your Existing or New installations Force Tested, please get in touch.

  • £150.00 – Swing Gates / Force Test, Includes Pass or Fail Certificate
  • £150.00 – Sliding Gates / Force Test, Includes Pass or Fail Certificate
  • £150.00 – Barriers / Force Test, Includes Pass or Fail Certificate

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: “Why should I carry out a Force Test?”
A: The Health and Safety Executive strongly recommend annual Force Testing as part of a planned preventative maintenance schedule. A lack of maintenance and failure to carry out Force Testing on gates or barriers may put the
public, your staff and other workers at risk of serious injury or death.

Q: “What does the Force Test involve?”
A: Prior to commencing the Force Test, a Risk Assessment will be carried out. The Force test process involves our qualified Engineers carrying out a series of tests on your gate system or barrier. From the tests carried out using the Speed Force equipment, we produce a detailed report documenting the test results. These results allow us to identify whether any work needs to be undertaken to ensure your system complies with current HSE Standards. The Force Process takes around 2 hours to perform.

Q: “What is a Risk Assessment?”
A: A Risk Assessment is carried out to determine the limits of the machinery, identify any hazards and forecast and report any potential risks.

Q: “What happens if my gates pass/fail the Force Test?”
A: If your automatic gate system fails the Force Test, further work will be required to bring your installation up to the required standard to ensure compliance with Health and Safety standards. This will involve safety devices or additional hardware being installed onto your system. If your automatic gate system passes the force test, we will provide a certificate and report which is valid for 12 months stating that it meets with the current Health and Safety standards.

Q: “What should I do now?”
A: Contact ADS Fabrications to arrange your Force Test.