Bollards are short, sturdy posts, typically made of steel or concrete. They’re a familiar sight in our modern world, and you’ll often find them used as car park bollards, on pavements, and in areas that require controlled accessibility. CT Safety Barriers are one of the leading manufacturer and supplier of parking bollards in the UK.
They serve many other purposes, including:
- Managing traffic flow
- Restricting access to car parks, driveways and private property
- Protecting pedestrians
- Reducing congestion
- Preventing theft and ram-raiding
- Improving overall safety
In addition to their practical uses, parking bollards can also make a space more attractive. Available in a range of metal finishes and top profiles, a beautiful bollard can add a touch of elegance to any location. Some bollards also include lights or reflective strips to make them more visible to drivers.
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What are bollards used for?
There are three main bollard types commonly used for parking purposes:
- retractable (or telescopic) bollards
- static (or fixed) bollards
- flexible bollards.
The type of bollard you need will depend on the specific requirements of your location and the bollard’s intended use.
Retractable Post Bollards
Retractable (or telescopic) bollards are designed to be electronically lowered into the ground as needed. This allows for flexibility, as the bollards can be quickly deployed when needed and then retracted when not in use.
They’re ideal for restricting access to controlled areas and are often used on entry paths to high-security locations, such as government buildings or military bases.
More commonly, you’ve probably seen them used as parking barriers for driveways as a means of deterring car theft and preventing unauthorised access.
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Static Security Bollards
Static (or fixed) bollards are self-explanatory: these security posts are either cast into the ground or bolted down, making them immovable. These types of bollards are often used to create safety barriers around commercial buildings and industrial structures – offering protection against ram-raiding.
You’ll also frequently find static bollards used on private property as a simple solution to prevent cars from parking where they shouldn’t.
Stainless steel static bollards are becoming increasingly popular, but we also carry a range of mild steel and carbinox bollards. All our metal security posts can also be adapted to carry chain hooks, which can help in directing the flow of cars and pedestrians.
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Flexible bollards are designed to bend or give way when hit by a car. This enables them to flex under the impact, reducing the risk of damage to both vehicle and the bollard.
These types of bollards are often made from durable rubber and are frequently used on roads to control traffic – especially in areas with high volumes of pedestrian traffic, such as in front of schools.
Bollard Regulations in the UK
Bollard placement in the UK is governed by security regulations laid out by the Department of Transport. This includes spacing and location restrictions, along with safety requirements and monitoring pedestrian movement.
If you’re placing bollards in an area that receives a lot of foot traffic, you should consider the current pedestrian flow to ensure the proposed bollards don’t impact convenience or cause conflict.
Here are the current bollard regulations in the UK:
- Bollards must be spaced with a maximum gap of 1.2m between each post
- The total width of a bollard arrangement (measured from the two outermost bollards) must be greater than the width of the entrance being protected.
- Bollards must be placed away from a site’s natural pinch points, such as narrow pedestrian passageways, to maintain existing levels of foot traffic.
- Place bollards where they will maximise hostile vehicle stand-off, without forcing pedestrians to walk along road edges.
- Identify natural pedestrian walkways by considering external factors like bus stops, train stations, busy office buildings and popular tourist destinations.
- Consider the pedestrian desire lines of the area and position bollards in lines that run perpendicular to these.
- Avoid placing bollards in areas where pedestrian conflicts are likely to occur, especially along narrow passageways, locations where queuing occurs, or areas of limited visibility.
- Consider the height and visibility of bollards, particularly in low light conditions, such as in a car park, or in locations where they can be obscured by a crowd.
- Seek specialist assistance if the required location has high foot traffic or complex flow conditions.
Bollards are a useful tool for managing vehicle access and providing protection for both buildings and pedestrians. Meeting car park bollard regulations, they offer extra security for car parks and private property and can be used alongside other control measures, such as safety barriers, to ensure the safety of your staff and property.