What Are Crash Rated Bollards?

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Crash rated bollards are used to prevent or reduce a range of vehicle-borne threats. They are typically used in areas where there is a risk of high-impact collisions. Bollards designed to protect against deliberate vehicle attacks are called hostile vehicle mitigation (HVM) bollards.

There are many types of crash protection bollards, including fixed, retractable, automatic and shallow mount. They are typically made of heavy-duty steel so that they can withstand a strong impact while sustaining minimal damage.

If a bollard is “crash rated”, this means that it has been tested according to certain industry specifications. In the UK, most crash rated bollards are tested and classified according to BSI PAS 68:2013 or ISO IWA 14-1:2013. These specifications ensure that the bollards can handle exceptionally heavy forces at high speeds.

Related FAQs

1) What are HVM bollards?

HVM bollards, meaning ‘hostile vehicle mitigation’, can withstand impact from heavy vehicles travelling at high speeds. As the name suggests, they are designed specifically for use in locations that may be prone to intentional vehicle-borne threats. They are sometimes called anti-ram bollards or anti-terror bollards.

Crash rated HVM bollards typically have a more robust construction than standard bollards. However, they come in a variety of exterior finishes such as painted and stainless steel. This means that it’s difficult to distinguish a HVM bollard purely by its appearance. The only way to know if a bollard can withstand a high impact is by its crash rating.

2) What are HVM crash rated bollards used for?

HVM security bollards may be used to mitigate various vehicle-born risks such as terrorism, vandalism and other targeted criminal attacks. They can also provide protection against accidental vehicle damage, such as drivers losing control of their cars.

These high-impact bollards may be found in a variety of locations, such as:

  • Urban settings (e.g. busy city centre streets, car parks and pedestrian zones)
  • Government and public buildings
  • Outside schools, airports, railway stations and events venues

Crash resistant bollards may also be used on private land, such as residential driveways.

3) What are the different types of crash protection bollards?

There are many different types of crash rated bollards and HVM bollards, including:

  • Fixed bollards. These bollards stay in place permanently
  • Automatic (rising) bollards. HVM automatic bollards can integrate with sensors or other security measures to lower into the ground, letting authorised vehicles through
  • Semi-automatic/manual telescopic bollards. These non-electric bollards can retract and rise when needed, but must be operated with a cordless drill
  • Removable static bollards. These bollards cannot retract into the ground, but can be removed and replaced as needed

Whether manual or automatic, all HVM bollards come in various heights, sizes, materials and specifications. HVM shallow mount bollards, for example, are ideal for areas with limited excavation depth. If you’re not sure which type of anti-ram bollard you need, see our buyer’s guide to choosing security bollards.

4) What do the different bollard crash test ratings mean?

It’s important to choose HVM bollards that are crash-rated in line with at least one recognised industry standard. Otherwise, they may not offer adequate protection against vehicular attacks.

In the UK, two of the most well-known standards are PAS 68 and IWA 14-1. Bollards that comply with these standards are awarded a certification that reveals their performance in an impact test.

PAS 68 and IWA 14-1 ratings that start with a V signify that the product has been vehicle tested. This letter is followed by:

  • The mass of the vehicle in kg
  • The vehicle category
  • The speed the vehicle was travelling in km/h
  • The angle of impact
  • The distance in metres the vehicle travelled

PAS 68 ratings also include the dispersion number in metres. For more information, check out our guide to bollard crash test ratings.

5) Are crash rated bollards easy to install?

No, crash rated bollards are not easy to install if you do not have the correct training, qualifications or experience. Even if the bollard has been crash tested, its sturdiness relies on proper installation and foundations. An improperly installed bollard may not be able to withstand a high-impact collision, which may put pedestrians and property at risk.

To offer reliable perimeter protection, crash rated bollards must be professionally installed in accordance with industry standards e.g. PAS 69. We recommend seeking guidance from a reputable bollard supplier such as MACs Bollards.

Why Choose MACs Bollards?

At MACs Bollards, we understand the importance of protecting your property or premises from vehicle-borne attacks. That’s why we supply only the highest quality crash tested bollards and vehicle security barrier systems. We pride ourselves on our unparalleled customer service and technical excellence.

Our range includes a variety of automatic, semi-automatic, manual telescopic and fixed security bollards built to HVM standards including PAS 68 and IWA 14. To find out more, contact MACs Bollards today and speak with one of our expert advisers.

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