How effective are bollard barriers against vehicle attacks | TPS Industrial
Written by tpsindustrial on December 19, 2019 in Construction

Following the recent terror attacks around the world where vehicles were used to inflict maximum damage on property and people, many businesses are considering upgrading their security measures to combat such attacks that might be launched in the future.

Also, the use by thieves of vehicles to breach the security defences of retail premises and construction sites is an increasing trend. With the cost to business of stock and equipment replacement and insurance premiums rising, more and more companies are looking to upgrade and modernise their security provisions.

Two popular options for industrial security include bollard systems and barriers.


In the past, concrete bollards and blocks were used as the solution to tackling vehicular security breaches. However, following extensive tests by DEKRA, the German Motor Vehicle Inspection Association, it was discovered that concrete barriers would not stop a 10 tonne HGV that was travelling at 48kmh. Terrifyingly, tests showed that the vehicle would continue on its way for up to 80 metres, inflicting catastrophic damage on anything in its path.

With that sobering thought in mind, hydraulically-operated metal bollard systems are now the preferred option, being much stronger and more effective than their concrete predecessors. Metal bollards have been successfully crash-tested for impact speeds of up to 80kmh and are now the preferred option for most organisations operating in areas that could be targeted by terror groups.

Bollards are a very effective solution against security breaches while also allowing easy access to pedestrians, allowing shoppers and workers to move freely without congestion. Security bollards are often seen in use at stadia, shopping centres, airports, and other busy areas that could be viewed as potential impact sites.

Their versatility, availability in various sizes and styles, and space-saving qualities make bollards a popular choice for many companies. Automatic rising bollards offer a good balance between functionality and price. Rising bollards are available as hydraulic or electromechanical. Bollard sizes can be tailored to suit the user’s requirements, and they can be operated by intercom, vehicle reader system, key-fob, and many other options.

Hydraulic bollards are the best choice for commercial premises. Hydraulic bollards offer reliability and a high level of performance, with the added benefit that they only require minimal servicing. Commercial hydraulic bollards are recommended for use in car dealerships and forecourts, shop fronts, warehouses, and offices.

For a hydraulic bollard system to work to its optimum, the correct safety equipment must be connected to it so that the entry and exit of all vehicles are safely controlled. The most popular and effective safety systems are traffic lights and safety loops.

Drop arm barriers

Some drop arm barrier systems are hydraulically operated and are popular thanks to their reliability and smooth operation.

This form of barrier is frequently used at industrial state entrances and large organisations and can be raised and lowered automatically when a vehicle is admitted to the premises. Barriers are commonly used in conjunction with stop/go traffic light systems.

Drop arm barriers are extremely secure and have been successfully tested for their effectiveness in preventing vehicle penetration. Also, barriers make a very cost-effective security solution for businesses to adopt.

In conclusion

Overall, in the light of rigorous testing by a number of well-respected organisations, hydraulically powered security systems, such as drop arm barriers and rising bollards, are deemed to be the most effective, reliable, and affordable solutions for commercial and industrial premises.

Traditional concrete bollards have been proven to be ineffective against attacks by thieves and other criminals using vehicles, so now is the time to move towards a more modern application to keep your premises and workforce safe from security breaches.

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