The NSI Installer Summit was organised by the National Security Inspectorate (NSI), the UKAS-accredited certification and inspection body which audits security and fire safety providers. The Door & Hardware Federation (DHF) – whose Powered Gate Group represents Britain’s leading manufacturers, suppliers, installers and maintainers of powered automatic gates and gate automation equipment – presented and exhibited at the Installer Summit as guests of the NSI.
A thought-provoking presentation and workshop at the Summit delivered by the DHF informed attending installers that, since 2005, there have been seven deaths in the UK and Ireland, at least nine serious injuries and countless near misses caused by dangerous powered gates. Indeed, it’s estimated that only 30% of the 500,000 automated gates in service in the UK are actually safe to use.
The event cemented relationships between the two organisations ahead of the launch of a new NSI approval scheme for installers and maintainers of powered gates, barriers and gate automation equipment. Delegates at the Summit heard how the two organisations, led by the DHF’s training officer Nick Perkins and NSI technical officer Mark Gallagher, have spent two years developing the DHF Code of Practice for the Design, Manufacture, Installation and Maintenance of Powered Gates (TS 011).
The new Code, upon which the NSI approval scheme will be based, covers installers’ responsibilities for gate design, new installations, risk assessment and commissioning. It details their responsibilities for the maintenance and modification of existing gates and covers risk assessment, safe isolation and documentation.
NSI ‘Gates’ Scheme
The NSI ‘Gates’ Scheme will be based on the new Code which is designed to raise standards of powered gate safety to new levels. NSI Gates will be available on two levels: ‘Gates Gold’ for companies that have an ISO 9001 Quality Management System (QMS) and want to be approved to the Code, and ‘Gates Silver’ for those that don’t have QMS, but want approval to the Code on its own.
The NSI will audit organisations seeking approval against the Code to verify compliance. This will initially be offered to DHF members and NSI approved companies.
At the conference, the DHF Powered Gate Group’s chairman Neil Sampson told delegates: “Properly installed and maintained automated gates are perfectly safe to use. Our industry will not tolerate unsafe automated gate installations being carried out by unskilled installers, or gates that are dangerous due to lack of testing and maintenance.”
Delegates learned that it’s the legal duty of building owners and landlords – as well as gate installers, maintainers and repairers – to ensure the safe operation of automatic gates.
“The new DHF Code of Practice and the NSI approval scheme will help us achieve our joint aim of confining powered gate accidents to the history books,” added Sampson.
Richard Jenkins, the NSI’s CEO, stated: “We were delighted to invite the DHF to the NSI Installer Summit. There’s great synergy between our organisations in raising standards of safety and security for people and property. The new NSI ‘Gates’ Scheme will significantly contribute towards public safety, endorse the high competence of specialist businesses in the sector and give facilities, risk and security managers and specifiers alike full confidence in the safety of their powered gate installations.”