What are security bollards?
As the name suggests, they are bollards that provide high security. In essence, these objects obstruct unauthorized entry into a particular area of land. They may consist of different types of metal, concrete or wood and can take on various shapes and sizes to suit their intended purpose.
Typically erected in front of a building’s entrance way or around a car park, security bollards can be fixed in such a way that would prevent vehicles from running over the entrance of an area.
When this is not possible due to surrounding walls and roads, they may instead be installed on rotating mechanisms that allow them to swing away when struck by a vehicle or other large object while still providing protection at all times.
Businesses and the general public make use of security bollards because they are not only effective in keeping unwanted people from entering a secured area but also aesthetically pleasing to look at.
Types of Bollards
There are several general types of security bollards that can be installed depending on the level of protection one desires. The seven main types are as follows:
Anti ram bollards
Anti ram bollards are the most common type of security bollard and are installed to prevent unauthorized vehicular access. This type is often used for both commercial and residential buildings. Their typical appearance includes a strong metal framework with reflective panels that serve as protective barriers against collisions.
A standard anti ram bollard will usually have three panels which are made out of concrete, stainless steel or other hard material. This type is considered to be the most effective because it physically stops a vehicle from crashing through an area and causing damage or harm.
Surface mounted bollards
Surface mounted bollards can be installed at roadsides and entrances where preventing vehicular access is necessary but there is no provision for ground space. They are designed to be low profile and strong enough to stop a moving vehicle at full force. These bollards are usually made of high strength materials such as reinforced concrete, stainless steel or glass that provide maximum protection.
Permanent security bollards
Permanent security bollards can be used in areas where access to vehicles is not desirable but there are obstacles preventing the installation of other types of bollards. Because they are fixed into place, these types are very difficult to move and are mostly used in public spaces or along access controlled roads.
Temporary security bollards
Temporary security bollards are the least common type of bollard because they are not as reliable as other types yet they can be installed cheaply and quickly so can be used to secure areas during events where there is a high risk of terrorist attack, such as outdoor festivals and concerts.
Fixed bollards are similar in shape and design but they are mounted on the floor instead of concrete pads which make them more aesthetically pleasing as well as unobtrusive to pedestrians walking past or by them.
These are often used around buildings and in parking garages. Rising or telescopic bollards are used to allow traffic flow in a particular area while still preventing unauthorized access. This type can be manually operated by an officer if required and will automatically rise from the ground when not in use, blocking vehicular entry until it has been lowered again.
Retractable bollards are typically used when high traffic needs to be accommodated such as an office building’s lobby. They can easily be moved aside when access is required by pedestrians and other non-vehicular traffic while offering heavy resistance against unauthorized entry when in the closed position.
Protective bollards or Parking posts, form another subtype of security bollards and are primarily designed to stop vehicles without damaging them. They are also made of strong stainless steel or concrete (as is common with other types) and can be installed in a variety of ways.
Some protective bollards are attached to the ground while others are free-standing. These two variations also come in an anti ram model which forces vehicles to stop when they attempt to crash through, and a surface mount type that affixes directly into cement. The latter is particularly beneficial in locations where additional protection is needed but there are no paved surfaces to accommodate ground-mounted installations.
Protective bollards may also be fitted with sensors which trigger an alarm when struck. This increases the level of high security by notifying authorities that unauthorized entry has occurred and can assist them in arriving at the scene sooner.
What types of bollards should I use?
Before installing any type of high security bollard, you need to consider why you want to install them in the first place. Do you want a high level of protection or a quick and easy solution that doesn’t look out of place? Once you know what your requirements are it will be much easier to find the right type for your project.
Are security bollards any good?
Yes, they are. Most are designed to stop vehicles from entering or leaving an area without making it seem like they are an obtrusive obstacle. They come in several designs and types which can be personalized according to different applications including road safety signs, parking posts, traffic cones and speed bumps .
Having the right type of bollard in strategic locations throughout a property or business can help provide the protection needed to deter dangers such as terrorist attacks, accidental collisions and even theft.
Security bollards will always vary in price, depending mainly on their type and materials used. The most common types are the anti ram, surface mounted and protective bollards which tend to be priced at under £1,000. A Fixed bollard will usually be more expensive because they are larger and their design is more complex for manufacturing purposes.
Bollards should meet up to BSEN1644 standards as well as Health and Safety Executive guidelines. These are the industry standard for bollards and those that meet them will offer your business or property maximum protection against possible attacks or other dangers.
Can bollards stop cars?
Yes, bollards can stop cars. In fact they were made for that very purpose. They’re a relatively inexpensive way to protect buildings and areas from threats such as terrorism and theft while also providing protection against collisions with pedestrians or parked vehicles.
The most common type is the anti ram which looks like a metal pole attached to a concrete base. They are designed specifically to stop vehicular threats by damaging the front end only which also prevents drivers from becoming unwitting suicide bombers.
Material, size and placement all play roles in determining how effective security bollards really are. A metal pole will likely be more resilient than one made of plastic, but it may not be tall enough or heavy enough to stop a heavier vehicle. This is why it’s important for security bollards to be placed strategically throughout an area where there are other objects that should not be penetrated by vehicles such as pillars, fencing or walls.
Bollard usage in the UK has increased over the last few years due to the threat of terrorism faced by the country and the rest of Europe. These days, drivers expect to see bollards by entrances and exits of buildings or in areas where there is a high volume of pedestrians.
How tall should bollards be?
How high security bollards should be installed depends on the types of threats they are meant to prevent. The most common type is the anti ram which is attached to a concrete base and stops vehicles by damaging only the front end.
These must be placed in strategic locations where cars would otherwise be able to enter an area without detouring or stopping, like near the entrances and exits of buildings or parking areas.
Since they are already expected to be there, anti rams that reach a height between 2 and 4 meters (6-12 feet) should be tall enough. If they were any shorter it would put pedestrians at risk for being hit by a moving vehicle or allow cars to simply drive around the bollards.
Surface mounted bollards are usually placed where there is a higher volume of pedestrian traffic, like the entrances to shopping malls or subway tunnels. They’re built in a similar way but can’t stop vehicles because they aren’t attached to anything. Their main purpose is for visibility so that drivers know when they are off limits .
In those cases, bollards should be tall enough to be noticeable but not taller than they would look out of place. Around 1-1.5 meters (3-5 feet) is a safe height for these types of bollards
Do you need planning permission for bollards?
Depending on the type of bollards, their usage and size may or may not require planning permission to install one. The law regarding this varies between each country so check your local councils guidelines for more information before installing security bollards around your property.
Protective bollards are usually smaller than anti rams which means they won’t block off an entire road. However, they will require planning permission if they are within a designated ‘protected area’.
These tend to be large installations which protect specific buildings or monuments so the process may take longer than usual.
Security bollards don’t always require planning permission but it’s best to double check before installing them on your property. If you are not sure how high they should be or which type to use you could try sketching out the area with bollards in mind.
Different types of bollards are available but each serves a unique purpose. If you want to keep your building safe without impacting the surrounding area, security bollards will provide an extra layer of protection with minimal inconvenience.
What colour should bollards be painted?
There are several different colours to choose from when purchasing high security bollards. They can be made from metal or plastic and either painted or left as is depending on your preference.
Wooden bollards give the traditional look of a post but they don’t provide much protection against vehicles. On the other hand, black ones blend in with concrete and look like a part of the road, making them difficult to notice at first glance.
If you want your bollards to stand out make sure they are painted bright colours. Colours such as red and yellow can be seen from a distance while white signs with black text tend to blend into their surroundings without being noticed.
If possible you should also make sure the bollards are well lit at night to increase visibility.