What are bollards?

by Danille Bettridge, Web Store Specialist

A bollard is a short vertical post that serves as a system to direct traffic. What are bollards used for? They can be used to protect assets by creating a barrier for potential collisions. They are most commonly found in heights 24 to 84 inches and widths of 4 to 9 inches. However, bollards can be customized to fit your needs.

What are bollards

How are bollards used?

Bollards can be used to protect utilities, electronics, machinery, buildings, or pedestrians from accidental collisions by vehicles, including passenger vehicles, transport trucking, and forklifts.  Bollards are used in many different environments, including:

  • Warehouses
  • Playgrounds
  • Sports fields
  • Traffic medians
  • Roadways
  • Trails
  • Store fronts
  • Site perimeters
  • Parks
  • Malls
  • Parking garages

Bollards come in several types, some more mobile than others:

  • Anchored: Anchored bollards are secured to the floor and are not portable. They are usually bolted down using a base or secured to the floor with cement. Bollards that are mounted at the base are usually designed for lower speed traffic while embedded or cemented bollards are used for higher speed traffic.
  • Collapsible: Collapsible bollards can be folded up or down using a tool or key.
  • Removable: Removable bollards use locks, pipes, or a hole in the ground that is formed to the shape of the bollard, which holds it in place, and allows it to be picked up and removed when needed.
  • Retractable: Retractable bollards use a manual key, hydraulics, or an alarm system to raise and lower the bollard to control traffic.

Following are some things to keep in mind when setting up bollards:

  • Accessibility: Make sure that the bollard does not obstruct any pathway for pedestrian, wheel chair and first responder access.
    • Check with your local city representative to ensure you are following all regulated codes when placing the bollards.
  • Aesthetics: Ensure that the chosen bollard style complements landscape design, and follows any visual, historic preservation, or city regulations established for that area.
    • Bollards come in a variety of styles including decorative, bright, and simple.
  • Material: Make sure that the material you choose is approved by building, city, and fire codes.
    • Bollards are commonly made from plastic and steel. Some are coated with elastomer to help absorb the energy from a collision. Bollards also can be filled with cement.
    • Stronger materials, such as steel, provide a more durable safeguard, as opposed to weaker materials, such as plastics.
    • Most heavy duty bollards for warehouse use come in yellow or red powder coat finish to make them more visible.

Bollards have many options and uses, making them a versatile and dependable addition to any area needing protection from vehicles and forklifts. You can rest easier knowing that bollards are in place to prevent damage to your important assets and personnel.

Check out the many bollard options we have available at the Materials Handling Store by clicking here.

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