Automated Gate Standards – Standards Explained

Automated gates are used the world over, allowing for easy access to a property for authorised personnel whilst maintaining an attractive aesthetic that complements the design of the property. However, as with all machinery, improper use can result in serious injury or even death, so there are stringent standards in place. This article will look at the automated gate safety standards to explain what the key regulations are.

In 2003, a ‘harmonised’ version of the European product standard for gates was published to help manufacturers meet the Machinery Directive’s requirements. The harmonised version is different from the normal version in that if a gate adheres to the standard, it is then under a legal presumption that it meets the health and safety requirements of the Machinery Directive. This is to reduce the need for risk assessments, and instead turn the attention to specific site investigations and assessments, rather than the product design itself.

Standards Key

The above key shows how the safety requirements differ depending on the determined risk of the product.

0 – No additional safety required

* = Key switch or similar to prevent unauthorised use

**= Either force limitation or a method of presence detection that detects a person or obstacle on the floor on either side of the gate. Alternatively, a device that ensures no person can be touched by the gate

***= A combination of force limitation and the above presence detection, or solely the presence detection that ensures no-one can be touched by the gate


1. BS EN 12453:2001, Industrial, commercial and garage doors and gates. Safety in use of power operated doors. Requirements.

2. BS EN 12445:2001, Industrial, commercial and garage doors and gates. Safety in use of power operated doors. Test methods.

3. BS EN 12978:2003, Industrial, commercial and garage doors and gates. Safety devices for power operated doors and gates. Requirements and test methods.

4. BS EN 1760-2:2001, Safety of machinery. Pressure sensitive protective devices. General principles for the design and testing of pressure sensitive edges and pressure sensitive bars.

5. BS EN 12604:2000 Industrial, commercial and garage doors and gates. Mechanical aspects. Requirements.

6. BS EN 12605:2000 Industrial, commercial and garage doors and gates. Mechanical aspects. Test methods.

7. BS EN 12635:2002 Industrial, commercial and garage doors and gates. Installation and use (harmonised).

8. BS EN ISO 13857:2008 Safety of machinery. Safety distances to prevent hazard zones being reached by upper and lower limbs.


What is CE marking?

CE marking is the marking that declares the product to be in compliance with the relevant European directives. CE markings are available under 23 directives across a range of sectors.

Is CE marking a legal requirement?

Under most directives, it is illegal to place a product on the market without a CE marking.

Who is responsible for CE marking?

The responsibility for CE marking is usually with the manufacturer of the product. If the manufacturer cannot be identified, the person putting the product into service is responsible. For powered gates, the installer is identified as responsible for CE marking – powered gates are not regarded as fully functioning until they are installed.

Are there any other relevant directives?

A CE mark will cover all relevant directives – for gates, this includes Low Voltage Directive, the Electromagnetic Compatibility Directive and the Radio and Telecommunications Terminal Equipment Directive.

What is a Declaration of Conformity?

This is a document issued by the manufacturer (or installer, for gates) that confirms the machinery complies with the Machinery Directive and all other applicable directives. It should be issued to whoever is purchasing the new machine, as well as being CE marked.

What is a Declaration of Incorporation?

This is applied to partly completed machinery, declaring that when the machinery is added into a fully working product as it should, it will comply with the Machinery Directive.

Who is responsible for the safety of a powered gate?

In terms of commercial environments, the responsibility for the safety of the powered gate falls to the person in control of the premises. This does not apply to private dwellings with no staff.

If a gate does not comply with safety standards, who is responsible?

When a sale is made, there is an implied law that the goods being supplied are in compliance with all relevant safety legislation. However, as safety standards change and the gate’s condition may vary over time, any necessary upgrades or repairs to the gate are the responsibility of the gate owner.

Strand Systems are experts in providing the highest quality automated gates for commercial and domestic customers alike. If you would like to know more about what we do, please feel free to get in touch with us today and we will be happy to help.