The bi-fold door is once again in the news… and once again, it’s not good. Over the years, this kind of door has been linked to countless accidents and multiple deaths. On April 1, 2014 it happened again. According to CBS news in Minnesota, “A northern Minnesota man died Tuesday morning, officials say, after his jacket got caught in a large door at his work. It happened at Bagley Hardwood Products at around 8:40 a.m. The 41-year-old Fosston, Minn., man was standing next to a 40-by-20 foot bi-fold door as it opened. He got caught in some cables and pulled up to his death, the Bagley Police Department said.” Read the full article here.
In 2002, according to the US Department of Labor, “one of five lifting, hoisting cables came unfastened at one end of a bi-fold door, apparently because the saddle clamps had been installed improperly. One cable, immediately adjacent to the loosened cable was missing entirely, and the door began moving downward on the right side. The tilting caused the door roller to come out of its track. The lower portion of the door then struck Employee #1. He was taken to a local hospital where he was later pronounced dead.”
The photos below were taken from a recent bi-fold breakdown at Apollo Aviation, LTD at the Brighton Airport (Shoreham-by-Sea, West Sussex, United Kingdom). The existing doors were only three years old and one had fallen down completely as a result of wire cable failure, the other was an accident waiting to happen. Having narrowly missed the operator on site, Apollo wanted to quickly dispose of a potentially dangerous situation and start new with a stronger, simpler, safer hydraulic door solution.
The bi-fold door filled a need when it was first introduced to the market. It was the only game in town and seemed the logical choice for anyone looking for a door for their facility or hangar. There weren’t other options available, but now there are. Everything is different in the door world. Technology has improved, safety is a concern, and the bi-fold doesn’t make sense. On bi-folds, the pulleys and drive chains are exposed to the stress of constant movement and run the risk of slipping out or breaking down. The awkward fold, with its pulleys and straps, are cumbersome and can clearly be dangerous. Is it really worth the risk to have a bi-fold door?
Hydroswing® Hydraulic Doors are a single panel hydraulic solution with 70% less moving parts. Our zero drop two-way Hydrolok system also assures the door will never fall should there ever be a loss of power. No cables. No pulleys. No Straps.
The choice is yours.