Gate Operator Installer Certification Begins

© 2007 Door & Access Systems
Publish Date: Winter 2007
Author: Todd Thomas
Page 46

Gate Operator Installer Certification Begins
First Installer School Opens in October 2007

By Todd Thomas, IDEA Managing Director

A comprehensive project involving at least five industry organizations will result in the certification of gate operator installers, beginning with the 2008 FenceTech event in Las Vegas in February. Testing will also be offered in April at the 2008 International Garage Door Exposition, also in Las Vegas.

The Gate Operator Installer Certification Program has been a work in progress for more than two years by the Automated Vehicular Gate Standard Ad Hoc Committee. A cooperative effort, the committee involves representatives of the American Fence Association (AFA), Door and Access Systems Manufacturers Association (DASMA), National Ornamental and Miscellaneous Metals Association (NOMMA), International Door Association (IDA), and the Institute of Door Dealer Education and Accreditation (IDEA).

New Training School Created

This collective industry effort represents a new professional designation program as well as a new course of study for a new training school created this year by AFA.

The Ad Hoc Committee produced the comprehensive textbook that will be the basis for Gate Operator Installer Certification, administered by IDEA, and the Gate Operator Field Training School, sponsored by AFA.

Tulsa: First Operator Installer School

The industry’s first Gate Operator Field Training School was conducted Oct. 21-26, 2007, in Tulsa, Okla. The school, originally planned for 48, had to be expanded to 64 students from as far away as California, Canada, Washington, and Maine.

The training will be held at least annually. Beginning in 2008, students at the school will be offered the certification exam at the conclusion of the week-long event. The school and the certification program are expected to serve gate and door dealers.

The curriculum covered UL 325, ASTM F2200, Electrical I & II, Installation I & II, vehicle detectors, and types of operators, accessories, and safety. Students varied, from those just getting into the industry to those with 30 years of experience. The range of student experience allowed for helpful informal sharing of industry expertise.

The Pioneers of Gate Operator Training

The chairman of the Ad Hoc Committee is AFA member Frank Hinds of Palmetto Southern in Lexington, Ky. Committee member Buck Buchanan of B & B Controls in Shrewsbury, Pa., was the primary author of the study guide and is the Master Instructor at the installer school. Buchanan will present two workshops on Gate Operator Installation at Expo 2008.

The members of the Ad Hoc Committee are:
· Frank Hinds, Palmetto Southern, Chair
· Keith Bomholt, Cheney Door
· Buck Buchanan, B & B Controls
· Tom DeSilvia, Chamberlain
· Joe Hetzel, DASMA
· Brad Hollis, GTO
· Donald Parrin, Pro Access Systems
· Tony Price, Price Overhead Door
· Brent Nichols, Picasso Gate
· Rick Sedivy, DoorKing

The IDEA Gate Operator Installer Certification Committee, which reviewed and edited the draft submitted by the Ad Hoc Committee, includes directors Donna Macik of LaGrange Automatic Gates, Joe DeGasperis of Superior Door & Gate Systems, and Dan Dombkowski of Chamberlain.

2008 Exam Dates

The first Gate Operator Installer Certification written examinations will be offered at FenceTech 2008, which will be held Feb. 5-7, 2008, at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas. Testing will be offered at the International Garage Door Expo set for April 23-26, 2008, at the MGM Grand Hotel and the Las Vegas Convention Center.