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What to Look for When Purchasing Flexible Safety Bollards

Being flexible is a good trait. It means being versatile, resilient, and adaptable to unexpected demands and changes. While that may seem like I may be talking about a person, I’m actually talking about bollards. 

Flexible bollards are versatile, resilient pieces of protection that adapt to unexpected accidents in warehouses, manufacturing facilities, distribution centers, and parking lots. Unlike standard steel pipe bollards, the flexible bollard will give a bit and move upon impact to limit the damage to both the bollard and the vehicle. However, not all flexible safety bollards are the same. 

Normally, when installing a bollard, the user is looking for protection in one way or another. But when it comes to flexibility, there are plenty of options on the market that do more than just flex a bit and return to form. There are options out there that can flex 36 degrees or more, meaning the bollard is nearly diagonal which now places the bollard in walking paths, parking spaces, or into products, assets and machinery that it was installed to protect. That’s a safety problem and a floor spacing problem that no facility manager wants to deal with. 

Ideal Shield's Base Plate Bollards protecting a walkway in an assembly plant

Ideal Shield’s Base Plate Bollards protecting a walkway in an assembly plant.

When looking to purchase flexible bollards, here are four determining factors to consider:  

1. Durability: While flexibility is desirable to absorb impact, the bollard must still be durable enough to withstand repeated collisions without breaking or deforming permanently.

2. Visibility: The bollard should be flexible enough to bend upon impact but rigid enough to remain visible and maintain its intended function, such as marking forklift lanes or critical asset boundaries.

3. Resilience: It should have the resilience to return to its original position after being struck, ensuring continued effectiveness in guiding traffic or delineating areas.

4. Environmental factors: Consideration should be given to the environmental conditions where the bollard will be installed, such as temperature variations, changing weather, and potential chemical exposure, which could affect its flexibility and longevity.

Here at Ideal Shield, we have a new flexible safety bollard that is designed to eliminate the “too flexible” possibility that the competition seems to have. 

The Bounce Back Bollard is a surface-mounted rebound U.S. steel bollard that is designed to withstand impacts from any angle from a full sized 10,000lbs. forklift at 5 mph and deflect up to 18 degrees before immediately returning to form. The specially designed internal rubber flex system absorbs the energy from the impact, limiting damage to the bollard, the vehicle, and the flooring. This design gives drivers the chance to react upon impact, which can help limit physical harm to the drivers that can occur in forklift-to-bollard accidents. 

Not only does the Bounce Back Bollard limit impact damage but with the 18 degree flex, the bollard can be installed much closer to critical assets like machinery, walkways, and storage areas, giving any facility much needed floor space.  

Forget about the polymer bollards that are basically glorified delineator posts and contact Ideal Shield today to learn about how the Bounce Back Bollard will save you money while saving you on potential damages in your facilities or parking lots. If you’re in the market for a flexible bollard that is less of a safety bollard and more of a delineator, We’ve Got You Covered too. Check out our Standard and Heavy Duty Flexible Bollard options.