Protective Bollards: Steel Pipe Security for Building Perimeters

Protection for structures, pedestrians, and property

November 27, 2017

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galvanized steel pipe bollards fastened in bundle
Steel pipe bollards, shown here before installation, calm traffic and safeguard people and property.
As the population, especially in urban centers, continues to grow, so too does the number of vehicles on the road. With the increase of drivers and cars in and around cities, the likelihood of accidents and collisions has gone up as well. Properly planned parking lot design and the installation of security bollards can reduce these risks, create a safe pedestrian environment, and increase overall security.

Versatile security pipe bollards

Security pipe bollards aren’t limited to a specific type of application. They will protect pedestrians and properties from vehicle crashes—accidental or otherwise. Steel pipe bollards can be easily installed in most locations or ground surfaces, for a range of applications.

Building protection

Cars aren’t just colliding into people. Crashes into structures and buildings happen at a high rate. According to researchers at the Storefront Safety Council, more than 60 vehicles crash into buildings every day, leading to 3,600 injuries per year. Further injuries can be caused indirectly from the damage to the building itself, such as collapsing buildings, trapping people under building rubble and in vehicles, and fires from damaged electrical wires and equipment. In addition to safety issues, vehicle crash damage can cause temporary or permanent closures, as well as financial or insurance complications. Security bollards create a physical and visual barrier to ensure vehicles keep away from buildings and other sensitive areas.
steel pipe posts protect a pad-mounted transformer
Steel pipe bollards protect sensitive property, such as utilities.

Parking lot safety

Parking lots are another common location of car crashes. With drivers focused on finding empty parking stalls, cars backing in and out and turning spontaneously, and pedestrians walking in and around cars, accidents, though usually not severe, are frequent. Security bollards can protect pedestrian areas from intruding cars without limiting foot traffic.


Vehicles aren’t only outdoors. Warehouses often use forklifts to move shipments in tight spaces, and even when moving at slow speeds, forklift collisions can cause serious injuries. Warehouse pipe bollards clearly define pedestrian areas in a working environment, and create a barrier around sensitive structures such as shelf corners and loading docks.

Why choose steel pipe bollards

Steel posts are one of the simplest, most cost-effective ways to offer protection for buildings and pedestrians from vehicle collisions, as both a physical and visual barrier. Steel bollards can be installed in any surface, indoors or outdoors, to prevent entry from errant vehicles, secure vulnerable areas, and protect site assets.
Steel pipe bollards painted with primer in bundle on skid
Steel bollard pipes are made from ASTM 500 B structural grade steel. These pipes have been primed for paint.
Steel pipe bollards are made from structural grade steel, which is reinforced with and embedded in concrete for added strength. Made from ASTM 500 B structural grade steel, pipe bollards are best installed in new concrete surfaces, but can also be installed using concrete forms or in existing concrete, though they will provide less strength. Steel pipe posts can be cut to custom lengths, and are available in a range of colors to add visibility or complement the building’s design or branding.

Bollard covers for design appeal

While they provide security and traffic control functionality, steel pipe bollards can be unsightly. Without powder coating or covers, metal posts are also vulnerable to rusting, especially in rainy areas and near the ocean. While paint provides some protection, it requires yearly reapplication. If a bollard post is left untreated, temperature and moisture can cause rust and weaken the bollard over time.
Stainless steel bollard covers with reflective strips outside a hospital
Stainless steel bollard sleeves cover pipe bollards to add style to security.
To improve both aesthetics and durability, plastic, stainless steel, and decorative metal bollard covers are available. Bollard covers, or sleeves, provide easy-to-install, cost-effective protection for steel pipe bollards, by covering the outside of the post with a more durable material, and preventing exposure to rain, snow, ice, and deicing salts or fluids. Decorative bollard covers come in a wide variety of designs, enhancing a landscape’s visual appeal instead of detracting from it. Bollard sleeves can also increase the visibility of steel pipe posts—some covers can be equipped with reflective strips, further helping drivers notice the bollard.From high-traffic parking lots, to vulnerable indoor areas, steel pipe bollards work as a safeguard for site users and assets. In locations where accidental collisions may occur, bollards can provide peace of mind for site owners and pedestrians alike.Note: Several installation factors will affect the protective capacity of steel pipe bollards. Bollard dimensions, installation materials and surrounding site conditions affect the amount of force a bollard can withstand. Consult an engineer to identify suitability and installation requirements for specific site applications.


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