What are Traffic Bollards?

A bollard is a post designed to control and direct traffic and protect from vehicle impacts and collisions. Bollards can be built and positioned to counter the strongest crashes.

Bollards have also been used as boundary markings, hitching posts and as decoration; nowadays bollards are mainly used to protect people walking on sidewalks. Let’s go through some of the historical and modern uses for traffic bollards.

Visual Barriers and Physical Protection

Bollards are used as a barrier to withstand high impact vehicle collisions, on highways or on curbs to protect pedestrians and buildings alike. Bollards are used as security obstacles to sensitive locations.
Security barriers are made of structural steel and reinforced with concrete. Some security bollards feature a self-locking taper or are heavily cored to their foundations.Image result for What are Traffic Bollards?

Visual barriers are usually decorative or have a utility cover or bright caution colors to prevent accidents and security sensitive areas. Some of these sensitive areas include utilities and department of homeland security buildings.

Another favorite type of visual barrier is what’s called a light bollard, which is architectural light posts but also serves for decoration and functionality for increasing safety in high traffic areas.

With advancements in green technology, solar technology has been implemented to make each solar light bollard is its own self-sustaining system.

Flexible and Traffic Bollards

Flexible bollards are designed to bend and warp when a vehicle strikes it to warn the driver they’re off the road and in danger. Their bollards are usually light weight rubber or plastic that often bend 90 degrees when struck.

They don’t provide any protection; they just are a safety precaution in the medians of the road. Some traffic bollards are designed to break off at the base when struck, so they won’t cause any damage to the vehicle that struck it.

A research study undertaken by Israel’s Transportation Research Institute has found the risk of accidents are significantly reduced when traffic or visual bollards are placed on highways.

It’s also shown that traffic bollards are highly effective when it comes to controlling and limiting traffic movements. Most traffic markers are a florescent orange or yellow color scheme to be more visually appealing to a motorist.

Another simple traffic bollard is what’s known as a bell bollard. A bell bollard is used in high traffic areas and is extremely efficient in deflecting heavy vehicles. Bell bollards use the concept of increasing slope to divert the flow of energy upwards, effectively slowing the car down.

Specialized Bollards and Removable Bollards

With advancements in technology, engineers have developed technology to have computerized bollards that can raise and lower on command to allow or restrict access for vehicles into secure areas that change safe to standard access frequently.

Removable barrier posts are affixed to anchors that are built into the foundation of the base of the bollard. Removable bollards are extremely useful for mixed security areas that protect pedestrians or property.

I hope you found this article on traffic bollards. There is a very long, functional history and they’re still proving their worth every day. From traffic bollards that protect drivers, to retractable bollards designed for multipurpose use, bollards are here to stay.

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Ronald Johnson

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