Pull up to the gate. Get out of the car. Unlock and swing the barrier gate open. Secure the gate with a clasp, rope or a large rock. Get back in the car and drive it up the driveway. Get out, walk back, close and lock the gate. Get back in the car and drive on your way! Sounds like an American western. Just substitute the word horse (or buggy) for car.

There has to be a better way!

And yes, that better way has come to Nairobi, the capital of Kenya. As you can see from the map, Kenya lies near the middle of Africa. It borders on the east with the Indian Ocean. (Kenya map image of elephants courtesy of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency.)

Millicent Mwololo reported the potential end to the above ritual in her article “Gate control is now so easy” in the Daily Nation on Wednesday, July 26th. The synopsis is below and you can read the entire article yourself.

She describes one technology to open the gate which would seem antiquated by current American standards.

It requires calling a number via cell phone to open the gate, then calling back again to close it. (Or the barrier gate can be programmed to automatically close after a predetermined time.) Another means of controlling the gate is merely pressing a button (i.e. garage door opener).

All in all, the technology enhances security of companies and residents by minimizing risk of attack. It also requires less person power and makes opening heavy gates a lot less cumbersome.

Prior to this, automated barrier gate control was exclusive to the very rich since equipment was imported from Italy or South Africa.

Several Types of Barrier Gates Described

Slide and swing gates are described, as well as roll up and new retractable gates. Their operations are also written about. Factors to consider when choosing a suitable gate type were listed. All things considered, it was a pretty comprehensive article but it sure read like a sales pitch for the company involved.

Pictured at the top is “A large herd of elephants makes its way across Amboseli National Park in southern Kenya. Amboseli is generally recognized as the best place in Africa to get close to elephants in their natural surroundings.” The image has nothing to do with the ECI-Illinois Website, but I really liked it and thought you might enjoy it as well.

For more information about similar type systems offered by ECI, please visit our Vehicle Access Control Systems page. Or contact us: