A Guide to Security Bollards

BollardsBollards can be an extremely effective form of physical security for a business. In order to make them as robust and efficient as possible, they need to be fit for purpose and placed correctly around the site.

When conducting a site survey, it is imperative that the entire surroundings are taken into account, especially if the site has vehicle access, as you need a thorough understanding of what the security risks are and how bollards can help potentially reduce this threat. Security bollards can be an effective solution to some security risks including speeding drivers and vehicle attacks. Here is our guide to security bollards.

Why should bollards be used? 

There are many reasons why bollards should be used on some sites to boost their overall physical security. Here are just a few of the reasons why businesses can benefit from installing bollards:

•    They deny entry to vehicles into certain areas without the need to restrict pedestrian entry or install a barrier or gate
•    They are a great safety measure to protect pedestrians from vehicles
•    Rising bollards help restrict vehicular entry to areas during certain hours rather than it being a permanent fixture. This provides businesses with a lot of flexibility over their security measures
•    They prevent vehicles from getting too close to or damaging property or buildings
•    The more robust Hostile Vehicle Mitigation (HVM) bollards are specifically designed to protect sites from terrorist vehicle attacks 
•    They can blend in well with their surroundings when designed and implemented correctly and feel less intrusive than some other forms of physical security

Crash rated and non-crash rated bollards 

Security bollards tend to be split into two broad categories: crash rated and non-crash rated. Crash rated bollards have been put through rigorous testing by government-approved bodies and determine the level of resistance. 

Non-crash rated bollards are still robust and a great form of protection, however they are not designed to be completely resistant to vehicle crashes. As their resistance power is not as robustly tested as crash rated bollards, they are best suited for lower-risk sites. 

Anti Terrorist Bollards

Our X Pass and Ranch range are all crash tested and certified by an accredited laboratory according to the latest international standards. Their hydraulic power packs are independent to each other, meaning that if one fails, the other bollards will remain unaffected. They are fitted with anti-tampering kits as standard and are the perfect choice for protecting more sensitive sites.

Automatic Bollards

Automatic bollards use a simple yet effective electrohydraulic mechanism that ensures a smooth and efficient movement of the bollard.  They are great for areas where you will sometimes need to allow access for vehicles but not all the time. The automatic bollards give a business complete flexibility over the timings. 

The GA7276H Automation Bollard from Gateway Automation is controlled by a CDS dedicated control unit, which is capable of controlling up to four bollards simultaneously. For added safety, they are fitted with obstacle detection and a crown of LED lights is mounted on top of the cylinder along with a built-in acoustic warning signal. 

Pedestrian Flow 

A thorough understanding of pedestrian movement through the site is vital for arranging bollards. Sites must ensure that pedestrian movement is still comfortable and convenient. They should not be placed where pedestrian conflicts occur, such as areas of limited visibility, and the height of bollards need to be considered. This is especially important during winter months when lighting is not as great.

Bollard Spacing

Spacing between bollards is also an important consideration that businesses need to look at. It is essential that the gaps are not big enough to allow vehicle access but are large enough for disabled people to access. There must always be enough space for easy wheelchair action. An absolute minimum is 1000mm. 

When planning the bollards, the spacing between each one should be equal wherever possible. They should also be at least 500mm away from the edge of roads. 

It is also important that no chains or rope are used between barriers. Doing so can cause hazards for blind or partially sighted people and can put them at risk.

Which bollard is best?

When choosing which bollards are best, there are no strict guidelines. Choosing the best bollard is completely dependent on the site in question and what their requirements are. From knowing their needs and their vulnerabilities,  an appropriate bollard can be chosen and installed. It is important you determine where you are planning on placing the bollards and then decide which type you go for.

How to protect small businesses from theft with physical security

Although cyber-crime is regularly in the news, theft is Gateway Theftstill, unfortunately, a common occurrence, especially for small businesses. Whilst some businesses are closed their premises become prime targets for criminals. This highlights the vital need for robust security systems 24 hours a day. Here we discuss how to protect small businesses from theft with physical security. 

Get secure locks 

Firstly, companies focus should be on their locks. Many businesses do not have locks that are robust enough and this can immediately create a weak spot in their security and make it easier for intruders to enter. Deadbolts are great for exterior doors, however they should also be considered for internal doors as well. Do not forget the security on your windows as well. It’s not only doors that need sufficient locks on them.
Use access control

It is commonly thought by businesses that they do not have the budget to have sophisticated security such as access control. However, this may not be the case. There are options available for a variety of budgets and definitely should be something businesses consider. From intercoms to keycards or even biometrics, there is a myriad of options available to choose from. All of the options not only make it difficult for thieves to enter the premises, but the company also has full awareness of who is on-site at any one time, which is invaluable. 

Invest in perimeter security 

Although perimeter security can be a huge investment, it gives you the peace of mind that your business is secure, especially when the site is empty. Even if you already have fencing, ensure you monitor the condition of it on a regular basis. There is no use having fencing around your business if they are holes in it or areas of weakness that could be easy for intruders to overcome.

Work with a security firm 

Teaming up with a security firm is something small businesses should do if they can afford to.  They can install a security alarm system with sensors which is a one-off investment that has been proven to be effective as law enforcement will arrive at your business shortly after an alarm goes off.

Encourage staff to be wary 

It is important that all members of staff are aware of the threat of intruders. No matter what your business is, it can still be a target and all members of staff need to be on the lookout for any strange behaviour and understand how they should report anything they see that they believe is suspicious.

Light up the area

An extremely effective method of security can be something as simple as security lighting. Although the lighting doesn’t stop burglars entering the property, it has been proven to be a deterrent and help scare away intruders as they are more likely to be caught and identified when they are under bright lights. When considering this option, plan the location of your lights strategically. You need to get into the mindset of the burglars and think about where the weak points of your building are. These should be the first you focus on. 

Install barriers

If your business has a large front window, it can easily become targets for ram raids and vehicle attacks. These threats can often be subdued and reduced significantly by installing bollards outside.

Protect your stock 

It is often not feasible to hide all of your stock, but if you have specific items that are of high value, you should ensure that these are locked away and will be difficult for intruders to come across. Using safes etc. can help with this. 

Collaborate with other businesses

You are not on your own and should try and collaborate with local businesses to help keep your premises as secure as possible. You could start or become a member of a business watch scheme. This allows companies of a similar size to yours to come together and keep an eye out for any suspicious behaviour. You could also potentially pool together to work with the same security firm.

The possibility of theft occurring at your business can be a terrifying concept. However, implementing some of the ideas we have discussed can help protect your business, your staff and your valuables. Some of these actions are more investment than others, however, they are all worth it if it means you can keep your business as secure as possible from the threat of theft.