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NWR: Homeowners Association -- UPDATE

holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
edited September 2014 in Chit Chat
Okay, I am curious if anyone has any experience / advice. DH and I live in a gated neighborhood. There is only one entrance / exit, and it is gated. On Wednesday the power went out. I wanted to head out to run some errands (because who wants to sit in a house without power?). The gate didn't work. I called the HOA president and she said that the gate SHOULD be able to be manually opened in the event of a power outage, but it wasn't. Finally, some of the guys were able to pry the gate open.

Fast forward to today. We got a bad storm (we saw lightning strike within 2-3 miles of us), and the power went out. DH and I decide to out to dinner, when ... You guessed it ... The gate was still shut. I called the HOA president again and she was like "well, I called the gate company and that's all I can do. Can you try to pry it open?" DH was unable to get it to budge. HOA said there was nothing she could so. Anger couple down the street were also trying to get out and were super pissed. So, he went and got his tools. He and DH unscrewed a few bolts and got the gate open. At this point, there were 2 cars trying to get home. Asinine. So we get back from dinner and the HOA board starts yelling at us, saying that they are going to send us the bill for repairs to the gate (um, they undid 2 bolts). I told them that we wouldn't pay it. DH and I are trying to find information regarding how there has to be some ordinance that specifies how residential gates should function in the event of a power outage. Any thoughts?

Re: NWR: Homeowners Association -- UPDATE

  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    That's what I think. I also told the HOA president that they should have kept the gate open until eh had confirmation that the issue had been resolved.
    JennyColadagladyscf
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Inkdancer said:
    There has to be something. It's a safety issue. If residents could not get in, neither could emergency services... suppose someone's house caught on fire from the lightning!

    There is an emergency box for the fire dept to get in, but I don't know how they would be able to do so of the power was out and the gate wasn't budging. 

    The couple that was helping is was actually elderly. The wife was telling us that her husband has health issues and she has had to rush him to the doctor recently. So I definitely agree it's a huge safety issue.

    I emailed the county and hope to hear something on Monday.  This shit is pissing me off and is ruining our Feiday night sex potential.
  • If the homeowners association still won't get back to you or do anything to fix the situation, I would bring this up with your local council.  It's a serious safety issue.  

    If you call the fire department, do you have to pay for that, or does the HOA?  I can assure the, the HOA is going to get really bloody sick of having to pay them to open the gate, and that might cause them to fix the problem sooner, rather than later.  

    In your dealings with the HOA repeatedly make it clear that this is a safety issue, and that you are particularly concerned about some of the residents in the complex with health issues.

    Good luck!
    image
    holyguacamole79Ndelible
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    So I get a call from the Fire Marshall today, who confirmed that the regulations show that there needs to be a backup way to operate the gate in the event of a power outage.  The Fire Marshall also told me that all gates are installed with a lever that allows for manual operation in case of emergencies.

    I email our HOA president and ask her if she knows how to manually open the gate in the event of an emergency.  She admits that she DOES know how to do so.  Funny, this is our text conversation on Friday night:
    image

    I am beyond livid. 
  • Wow. Glad you have screenshots. Keep doing that. I would actually try to have all communication through email or text so that there is a record of everything. What. A. Bee.Yotch.




    image
  • lyndausvilyndausvi Western Slope, Colorado mod
    Moderator Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its
    We lost our power all the time in St Thomas.  I'm talking about weekly.   All the gates had backup generators.   Some only had enough power to raise the gate and lock in the open position until the power went back on.  Others had enough power to open and close the gates for a period of time.  I.e. not for days, but a good few hours.  






    What differentiates an average host and a great host is anticipating unexpressed needs and wants of their guests.  Just because the want/need is not expressed, doesn't mean it wouldn't be appreciated. 
  • climbingwifeclimbingwife NYC 'burbs member
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    Wow. That is unreal!

  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    Yeah.  The emails are laughable.  I ended up copying the rest of the HOA board on this.  DH and I have two theories:

    1).  She is lying and didn't know how to manually operate the gate, and is now trying to look responsible.
    2).  This is a control issue and she wants to maintain control.  This one pisses me off the most because there are too many safety issues.  She said that she has plans to show the HOA board how to open the gate in the case of emergency, to which I said that the whole neighborhood needs to know how to do it for our safety. 
  • holyguacamole79holyguacamole79 a taco truck in Houston member
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    @scribe95, I believe we are supposed to have a battery-operated backup.  And I only think the residents need to know how to get out.  We're in a small neighborhood; there are only 30 houses here.  And, as I understand where the manual lever *should* be, it's on the inside of the gate, so people can't open it from the outside anyway.  But I need to go look.
  • This isn't your job, obviously, but you should be able to find the gate manufacturer's website and maybe find the instructions for opening the gate in a no-power situation.  I know some gates are programmed to open when they lose power, so that they are "stuck", but in the open position.  That way, at least people aren't trapped.
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