Can Security Measures Involving Safety Bollards be Too Stringent?
Any society relies on access to a variety of resources, and this has to be balanced against security needs. If security in an area is too tight, then normal activities cannot be conducted, and if the security is too lax, then chaos can quickly ensue. This principle underlies many aspects of civic planning and engineering, and this includes the use of safety bollards. The primary role of any bollard should be to promote public safety and yet it may also have a security role to play at the same time. This balancing act can be difficult, and the situation is exacerbated by an increase in terrorism and vehicular related crimes. Let’s look at three broad guidelines that could help you to strike the right balance between safety and security at your location.
1. Consider the Potential Threat
For the vast majority of locations, a series of safety bollards would be more than sufficient to deal with a threat. As an example: an 8m high metal fence topped with razor wire would be a wholly inappropriate barrier in a suburban shopping mall. In this sort of location, safer parking would be the primary area of concern to keep customers and employees safe on and around the car park.
However, the same logic could be applied to a high priority terrorist target. As an example: a planner would not try to deter a terrorist from attacking a military facility by putting up a series of “no trespassing” signs.
Every location will have different safety and security concerns, and these should direct your decisions. It’s impossible to plan for every single eventuality, and even if you did, you could run the risk of making your location too secure and thus harder to use.
2. Access to Your Location
A series of safety bollards should allow access to your location unless that access could pose a threat to the public. So, it would be a good idea to place a series of tougher safety bollards around a construction site to prevent unauthorized access. This is fine in principle, but the location cannot be so secure that emergency access cannot take place. In the event of an accident or crime, the emergency services will need to get to and into your site. They may also be carrying bulky safety equipment, such as stretchers, jaws of life and defibrillators. Make sure that you have provisions for these types of access needs when you plan where you safety bollards will be used.
3. Consider the Aesthetic Appeal
Whenever possible, it’s a good idea to use safety bollards that are aesthetically pleasing or that add to the look of the location. This will boost the visual appeal in the area and put people at ease when they are using the space. As an example: large planters can be installed and filled with beautiful plants, and yet they act as a security barrier. Even a line of uniform high visibility safety bollards installed in a parking area can be nice to look at in their own way, and they certainly promote a feeling of professionalism.