The number one garage door danger is crushing. Garage doors are extremely heavy, even lightweight aluminum doors weigh more than an average adult. Especially where young children are concerned, the dangers of heavy, sectional door accidents are hefty considerations.
It is federally regulated that all new and replacement garage doors must be installed with automatic reversal features. These come in two methods and both must be functioning. First, an infrared “eye” beam system is placed across the doorway. If this light beam is broken while the door is closing, the door must automatically retract. Of course, lots of people play the dangerous push the button and run game, where they push the button on the wall that closes the door, then run to get out of the garage before the door closes. In order to avoid breaking the light beam, the person must jump over it. This creates a head bump injury danger.
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In order to avoid serious head bump injuries, all garage doors must come equipped with bump sensors. Basically, if the bottom of the door comes in contact with any resistance while closing, it must automatically reverse and go back up. This should be checked for functionality every month by placing a two by four of wood, or similar object, under the door and allowing it to reverse. If the door doesn’t reverse, it should be detached from the automatic opener and only used manually until a garage door service can fix the problem.
Releasing a garage door from the automatic opener is a frequent cause of falling door injuries. What usually happens is that the person pulling the release lever doesn’t realize that another person is standing in the way of the door. Because these doors are very heavy, they should never be detached from automatic openers and allowed to fall to the ground. The door should be closed first, manually is fine, and once it is fully closed it may be released from the spring.
Garage door dangers aren’t just in head injuries and body crushing. Fingers can also get crushed in between the door sections. Don’t allow children or adults to lean against sectional panel doors, especially when they might suddenly become operational by another person.
Regular garage door service and maintenance can drastically reduce the risks associated with vehicle entry doors, especially those controlled by automatic openers. However, especially where children’s safety is concerned, there is no better protection than vigilance and educating the family on how to handle garage door safety.