|Garage Door Injuries
The garage door is usually the heaviest moving item in a house, sometimes weighing as much as 300 to 400 pounds. This creates a safety hazard, especially for children who are smaller and may not be aware of the dangers. Most injuries involve fingers or hands caught between the door sections as they close. Children or animals can also be trapped under a closing door.
What Children Should Know
Teach your children safe garage door practices. Make sure your children know:
- No one should stand, walk, or run under a closing door. Adults should model this behavior as well and provide a good example.
- Never play under or near the garage door.
- Children should know to go for responsible, adult help when assistance is needed. However, when children reach an age where they can responsibly learn, they should know how to use the emergency release in case someone is pinned. Determining an appropriate age for this is difficult, since all children mature, are physically capable, and take responsibility at different ages.
Additional Preventative Steps You Can Take
- Install garage door push buttons at least five feet above the floor, out of reach of small children.
- Garage door openers manufactured after Jan. 1, 1993, are required by federal law to have advanced safety features. These openers have an automatic reversing feature that reverses the door if it comes in contact with an object while closing.
- If your garage door opener does not have this feature, consider replacing the opener. If it does have this feature, test it regularly by placing a 2×4 flat board on the ground and close the door. If the door does not reverse, hire a qualified individual to adjust or repair the door opener or door.
- Visually inspect the garage door springs, rollers, pulleys, cables, and track on a regular basis. Look for loose or worn parts. Do not attempt any maintenance around the springs. The springs, their mounting brackets, cables, and other associated hardware are under high tension. If a part were to break or come loose, it could cause serious injury. An experienced individual should do this work.
State Farm® believes the information contained in the Good Neighbor House® is reliable and accurate. We cannot, however, guarantee the performance of all items demonstrated or described in all situations. Always consult an experienced contractor or other expert to determine the best application of these ideas or products in your home.
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