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Company Fined after Worker Injured by Faulty Gate

A company that manufacture and install gate systems has been fined by the Health and Safety Executive after part of a gate broke off and struck a worker.

Advanced Gate Limited of Merthyr Tydfil had been previously contracted to produce and install a gate system at PHS Limited in Caerphilly. On 30th September 2014, there was a failure in the gate mechanism and an employee of PHS Limited was required to manually close the gate.

The gate in question consisted of two leaves, one driven by a motor and was attached to the other via a chain and cog, providing the movement for the second leaf.

As the worker pulled on one of the leaves, it detached from its runner and a vertical rail struck his leg. The worker suffered severe trauma to the muscles in his leg and also nerve damage, resulting in a ten day hospital stay and his inability to return to work for a whole year.

A HSE investigation found that the failure of the gate mechanism was due to poor design, as well as insufficient assessment and control measures to ensure the gate was safe to use.

After pleading guilty to breaching Section 3(1) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, Advanced Gate Limited, of Brecon Road, Merthyr Tydfil, Mid Glamorgan, was fined £20,000 and ordered to pay costs of £5,000.
Dean Baker, HSE inspector, said following the hearing:

“Powered gates pose a risk to employees and members of the public. Those responsible for installing, maintaining and operating these gates need to make sure they are safe during installation and use. This accident could have been avoided if the clearly foreseeable risk of the gate falling had been identified and controlled.”

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Source: Health & Safety Executive

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