The National Security Inspectorate (NSI) has introduced its “groundbreaking” Powered Gates Certification Scheme. As such, both the installers and maintainers of powered gates, barriers and gate automation equipment are now able to obtain NSI approval for the services they provide to end users.
NSI approval realises the ultimate reassurance for buyers and users of powered gates that their contractor is complying with the highest standards of both safety and security.
For the past two-and-a-half years, the NSI has been working with the Door and Hardware Federation (DHF) in the development of its new Powered Gates Code of Practice (DHF TS 011:2016 Code of Practice for the Installation and Maintenance of Powered Gates). The new Code, upon which the NSI certification scheme is based, covers installers’ responsibilities for gate design, new installations, risk assessment and commissioning. It also details their responsibilities in relation to the maintenance and modification of existing gates and covers risk assessment, safe isolation and documentation.
The NSI scheme based on the DHF Code is a significant response to industry concerns over poor safety standards, as well as tragic accidents caused by unsafe powered gates. Since 2005, in fact, there have been seven deaths in the UK and Ireland, at least eight serious injuries and countless near misses caused by dangerous powered gates.
It’s reported by the DHF that just 30% of the 500,000 automated gate installations in service in the UK are safe.
For its part, the NSI’s new Powered Gates Certification Scheme is designed to reduce the safety risks associated with powered gates to a level that’s as low as is reasonably practicable.
Six companies working in the powered gates sector recently volunteered themselves for scrutiny by taking part in a comprehensive pilot audit programme guided by the DHF and conducted by the NSI. The programme tested the efficacy of the new Code as being fit for purpose, including verifying the competence of NSI auditors and the practicality of the audit process itself.
Verification of expertise and professionalism
Speaking at IFSEC International 2016, Richard Jenkins (the NSI’s CEO) said: “We’re delighted to announce that the NSI is open for business for those organisations seeking Powered Gate Approval as verification of their expertise and professionalism and commitment to gate safety. The pilot programme was invaluable in validating the Code, the competencies of our auditors and our audit process.”
Jenkins continued: “Both ourselves and the DHF are immensely grateful to the organisations who took part in the pilot programme. Many lessons have been learned over the last two-and-a-half years, and we can be rightly confident that the ‘Gates’ certification scheme will demonstrate the commitment of progressive organisations working in the powered gates sector towards raising standards.”
Bob Perry, the DHF’s executive chairman, commented: “This has been a really fulfilling project, with ourselves and the NSI working so effectively together. I’m really pleased that this important new scheme is being launched, and we wish the NSI every success in delivering it.”
*Approved companies will be able to issue NSI/DHF Certificates of Compliance to the owners and operators of those installations completed in compliance with the Code. DHF TS 011:2016 Code of Practice for the Installation and Maintenance of Powered Gates can be downloaded from the DHF website at: http://www.dhfonline.org.uk/publications-gates-automation.aspx
**Companies interested in achieving certification for their powered gates business should contact the NSI’s Applications Team on (telephone) 01628 764855 or via e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org