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Waitrose automatic doors just closed on toddlers head!

(30 Posts)
leannac Mon 31-Dec-12 12:48:53

She was a few steps ahead of me & I'm 8 months pregnant so not as quick as I used to be. Doors started closing but are automatic sliding doors so presumed they'd sense her & stop but instead they closed on her head really tightly then wouldn't open when I got there so had to wrench the doors open. She seems ok & we are home now but I'm an absolute wreck. I've demanded that the store gets the doors looked in to but not really sure what else should do. If I'd been a few seconds later that door could have really done some damage as wasn't stopping just cos my daughters head was in the way

chickydoo Mon 31-Dec-12 12:53:56

God that is awful!!!
Did you speak to the Manager?
If not phone now & tell him/her what happened! They Must get the door sorted immediately! You could call or email their head office & complain if you get no joy from the store.....I'm quite shocked by it TBH

StickEmWithThePointyEnd Mon 31-Dec-12 12:57:37

I'm not sure if this is true (as it seems like a huge health and safetly issue tbh) but I was told that the sensor only detects movement from a certain height, which is why automatic doors often won't work for young children. This is useful if they are already closed and it stops them escaping the shop but terrible in your circumstances. I hope your little girl is ok.

SoupDragon Mon 31-Dec-12 13:05:46

The sensor to open them only works for a certain height but surely there should be a safety "bounce back" mechanism like car electric windows have.

PhoebeGreen Mon 31-Dec-12 13:09:21

That is awful.
Maybe you should report it to your local council too, so they can send someone in to check it's been fixed / adjusted / replaced in order to avert another H&S incident.
Make sure your complaint to the store is in writing too, even if you just send a follow up email clarifying what happened.
I hope your DD is ok.

leannac Mon 31-Dec-12 13:09:24

The manager actually saw it happen & says he will call an engineer immediately plus offered me sit down, cup of tea etc but I can't help but feel they should do more than that. I asked them to call me & let me know that doors have been fixed but was unable to do much more than that as am a tad hormonal with pregnancy & was actually desperately trying not to cry after seeing my little girl almost hurt so so badly. She was quite shocked but I think she is ok now as is chattering away & running around as normal. She's doing better than me to be honest as I'm a wreck & just want someone to have to pay for hurting my little girl & really really make sure nothing like this happens to anyone else.

I've also heard the thing about the sensors only working on certain heights & can accept that might be the case (much as I hate the concept of no safety of children being considered) but surely when the door hit her it should have opened again immediately, not just continued to try squash her til it closed? And surely when I ran up to it it should have opened again & not remained in a crushing position on my toddler?

Maybe I'm a bit over emotional due to crazy pregnancy hormones but I am so upset & furious

Bluefrogs Mon 31-Dec-12 13:11:14

You need to phone their head office now!
They should have done an incident report there and then,regardless of the possible height issue with the sensor it's a huge health and safety issue and potentially a worse accident waiting to happen.
Did you speak to the manager on duty?
Hope your dd is ok x

cutegorilla Mon 31-Dec-12 13:17:32

Surely they should come back open if they are blocked, like lift doors. We have electric gates on our drive and I know it was a legal requirement that they did that for safety reasons. I'm glad your DD is ok but that could potentially have been extremely serious sad

WeAllHaveWings Mon 31-Dec-12 13:19:12

I don't know alot about automatic doors, but I would go with the reasonable assumption a small child might not be enough to trigger them so should be supervised very closely around them.

From a safety point of view I would expect if they did close on an obstacle/child they would not exert any continuing heavy pressure to close thus preventing a serious injury.

IMO you shouldn't complain about the doors shutting, but if you believe they continued to try to shut on your dd with enough pressure to injure her then complain.

Hope you are both ok now.

ShatnersBassoon Mon 31-Dec-12 13:24:30

There's nothing else to do. You've flagged it up with the manager, your daughter wasn't injured and there was no harm done. You've done all you need to do.

Bluefrogs Mon 31-Dec-12 14:07:12

Stores have safety procedures in place and should have recorded the incident there and is not true to say it's ok no harm done,what if there is a fault and next time something serious does happen?
Op you need to follow this up,this is not a fuss over nothing your daughter had to be removed from some doors that didn't stop closing.

Pantomimedam Mon 31-Dec-12 15:05:07

I'm not surprised you are upset, especially as you are p/g so more than usually emotional. I'd have imagined the doors would bounce back if they hit an object as well - and I'm surprised they don't react to children as well, ffs, plenty of children will walk through them. Not really promoting safety to stop runaways if it means children get crushed instead. hmm

Do follow up with an email to the store, asking what the hell they are doing to make sure this doesn't happen again.

MrsY Mon 31-Dec-12 15:09:28

They should have done an incident form, including taking all your contact details etc, and then contact you after a few days to check she was ok and if she had seen a doctor. Call them now and tell them how dissapointed you are.

It's not true to say no harm done.

MrsMushroom Mon 31-Dec-12 15:14:16

You need to demand that they get the security footage now...and even speak to the police about's NOT ok and you're right to be horrified.

I don't care if they aren't designed to work for toddler..they SHOULD be! Idiot engineers! that's a terrible thing to happen I hope you and DD are ok.

MrsReiver Mon 31-Dec-12 15:14:54

Did they fill in an accident form? DS had an fall in a supermarket when he was little - slipped on a spillage - he was absolutely fine, but the manager still filled in an accident form.

I would wait until tomorrow and follow up with an email or phone call to make sure the work has been done as promised.

runnyhabbit Mon 31-Dec-12 15:35:14

Leannac, I hope you and dd are feeling a bit better now.

Fwiw, dh is a door engineer (installing and maintaining these types of doors and is british standard registered) and I have picked his brains. He has told that as part of BS 7036, all automatic sliding and swing doors sensors must activate at a minimum of 1.4m in front and behind doors, there is no height restriction whatsoever. So either the doors are faulty or have not been properly installed/maintained. Dh has said you must take this further as wait rose are breaking h&s laws by having non-compliant access (his words)

If you want anymore info, please pm me

runnyhabbit Mon 31-Dec-12 15:38:42

Mrs mushroom - dh totally agrees with you. He was horrified when I told him about this. Far too many engineers who are more concerned about the £££ than what they should actually be doing.

lovemynathy Mon 31-Dec-12 16:36:17

They are breaking the law by not recording the incident. I would also speak to Health and Safety Department about it. And what do you mean 'no harm done'
? 8 months pregnant in a horrific shock!!! And you never know maybe the LO will developed the fear of doors later. Sorry hun I don't want to scare you, but you should come back to them and do a serious complaint and the fact that they did not record it. They must provide you with a video from CCTv as I think you can request it under the the Data Protection act. I would say they should offer you some sort of compensation as a good will but if they don't, I would complain to them, health and safety and paper if it needs to be. It just make me sooooooo angree they took it so lightly!!!!!! Good luck hun, I hope you and little one is ok, don't let it spoil your New Year's Eve.

wavesgoodbye Mon 31-Dec-12 16:48:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wavesgoodbye Mon 31-Dec-12 16:50:59

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

leannac Mon 31-Dec-12 17:01:22

Thank you so much for all the advice. Makes me feel better that otheumd don't think I'm overreacting. She is totally fine now thank god. Although I'm watching the poor thing like a hawk to check she doesn't exhibit any strange behaviour. It's good to know that the doors should have a safety mechanism even for toddlers, thanks for that. I think given my current emotional state its a good idea to write them an email as I will be able to be more rational & calm (& less teary & angry) in an email than I can manage in person today!

lovemynathy Mon 31-Dec-12 17:35:46

Treat you LO in a belly with some hot chock, he needs some reassurance too :-)

PseudoBadger Mon 31-Dec-12 17:37:27

Let your local Environmental Health department know so they can investigate.

CalamityKate Mon 31-Dec-12 17:39:06

What a shock, poor you!

Are car electric windows really meant to bounce back?? Ours never do. I know because one of my favourite games if I'm driving off anywhere and leaving DH at home is to get him to lean in for a kiss and then close the window on his head.

Inclusionist Mon 31-Dec-12 18:22:55

My friend only just scooped DS out of the path of the massive automatic doors of the glasshouse at Wisley Gardens when he was about 18mo. They definitely would not have stopped. I reckoned if they had only caught his arm they would have broken it.

Nothing actually happened though so I couldn't really say anything.

I watch automatic doors like a hawk now.

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