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Visual Aids Bolster Bollard Post Safety

03 February, 2023

Whether used as a means to direct traffic, deter vehicle intrusions, and to protect people and structures, bollards act as visual guides, reminding drivers to drive safely and responsibly in areas near schools, government buildings, and industrial warehouses and shipping yards.

Matt Bowers braced for death as a truck lost control and came spiraling toward him. Instead of slamming into the 26-year-old father, the vehicle's front end folded into a recently installed metal post a mere several feet from the New Jersey warehouse in which he worked.

"I hadn't even thought about those posts before, and it's something that's super protective for people and buildings," Bowers said. "They are great. ? Sure saved my life that day."

Those posts are also called bollards, and they can typically be found in places such as the front of government buildings, along street corners or even around gas and electric lines for visual aids and security measures. Bollards also help in machinery and traffic management for active warehouses and loading areas. Whether removable, collapsible, retractable or fixed, bollards reduce the number of injuries and accidents as well as property damage and criminal activity.

When a man driving a rental truck crashed into a crowd in New York, killing at least eight people, the death count likely would have been more had the driver not ended up mounting the vehicle on a bollard. Following this intentional attack, scores of cities throughout the nation are increasing the strategic placing of protective barriers along busy corridors.

Regulations on Bollards

Bollard construction, installation, and use is governed by OSHA regulations in most cases, dependent on their intended uses. Permanent fixed bollards are required around facilities for security purposes for embassies or public institutions. OSHA has regulations for the specifications of size, weight, color, resistance level and type of bollard required. Not all collapsible, removable, and fixed bollards are OSHA regulated, but bollards greatly reduce risks of accidents and property damage by boosting public safety in many ways for a variety of facilities. The U.S. Dept. of State requires bollards be placed in front of government buildings, such as schools, for protection against a 50-mile per hour impact from a vehicle weighing 15,000 lbs. The Department of Transportation has a manual on uniform traffic control devices.

Enhance Bollards with Tapes

Bollards are often disguised, painted or covered for aesthetic purposes, however these safety mechanisms' effectiveness becomes even greater with visual communication tools such as highly visible, distinctive signage and attention-grabbing visual aids. City public works departments can satisfy accessibility requirements of the Americans With Disability Act by using bollards, along with amplified signage and lighting to help assist those who may have a disability. Grab attention with high-quality PathFinder reflective tape that increases visibility, day and night. Alert drivers on a dimly lit, bollard-lined curve using high-intensity reflective tape directly on bollard to increase visibility. Distinctive black and yellow or red and white safety markings can alert drivers and cyclists as well as pedestrians to improve visibility of each security or traffic bollard. 

No matter the scenario or conditions, it is imperative that hazards are quickly and easily spotted from a safe distance. PathFinder reflective tape selection ranges from engineer-grade reflective and prismatic-reflective tape to fluorescent supply and more. These tapes can be used indoor or outside in any environment with instant adhesion that conforms to even curved bollard surfaces. Call us: 888.326.9244.