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CSE Speedgate Chapter: Marauding Terrorist Attacks

Last Updated 16 April 2021

CSE Speedgate Chapter: Marauding Terrorist Attacks

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Essential Reading


Speedgates provide a means to control access to a secure area by staff and visitors. 

Research conducted by NPSA has demonstrated speedgates generally offer a negligible delay to forced entry by marauding attackers with bladed weapons, firearms, and explosive devices in contact with the product. This is because it is easy to climb over, pass underneath or even push through many designs of speedgate. 


NPSA’s Marauding Terrorist Attack Standard (MTAS) ( focuses on the delay a barrier can afford against the attacks stated above.  It does not consider the ease with which barriers can be secured and unlocked to aid escape. It is therefore extremely important to understand how easily a barrier can be secured and unlocked to aid escape.

NPSA has not been able to evaluate every variant of speedgate currently on the market to award each product a MTAS sophistication level.  However, the following design features were found to offer greater resistance to entry during research trials conducted by NPSA:

  • Leaves at least 1.8m high above floor level.
  • Gaps between the floor and the bottom of the leaves no greater than 220mm.
  • Sloping plinths (where people would typically swipe passes) that cannot easily be used as a step to climb over the barriers.
  • Fixed panels of a similar height to the leaves fitted to the top of the plinths so that attackers cannot easily pass between the sets of leaves.
  • Using laminated glazing or polycarbonate to form the leaves if the speedgates are to incorporate transparent leaves.

Further information can be found in NPSA MTA guidance entitled MTA Supplementary Guidance - Physical Barriers that delay and discourage attackers.  

The services of a reputable security consultant with demonstrable experience in the relevant area should be sough if further advice is required.

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