7 Steel Barrier Buying Tips
If you are the person who was designated as the one to buy steel barriers you may not know where to start – other than a Google search. If you happened upon this post, we will do a quick outline of the 7 things you should know before buying a crowd control barrier.
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1. Plastic or Steel Barricades?
Steel is by far the more common crowd control barrier. Steel barricades are more durable and more suited to crowds who will be in physical contact with your barrier. I.E. if they are standing in line, set up along with a parade route, used for protest gatherings, etc. Plastic pedestrian barriers, while not as strong offers more visibility and are preferred for use in areas where children will be active because there are no sharp edges. It also makes setup and tear down a bit easier because they are much lighter.
2. Galvanized Steel Barriers.
When you are purchasing your steel barriers, make sure they are hot dipped galvanized. This process actually submerges the steel barriers into a zinc bath that coats the inside and the outside of the barriers. Hot Dipped is the key. This will ensure your barriers will not degrade from harsh weather conditions.
3. Full Frame Assembled.
Steel barriers tend to be a significant investment. You don’t want them breaking after a year or two in service. When selecting your steel barrier, make sure the design offers vertical bars inserted into the frame and saddle welds. These design elements are critical to a barrier that can last decades. Read more about steel barrier craftsmanship.
4. Bolt-on Bases.
The bases of crowd control barriers are typically the first piece that is damaged. If you want a barrier that can be repaired and reserviced, make sure they have removable, bolt-on bases. This feature also offers you the flexibility to change from a bridge base to a flat base type. Read more about barrier base types.
5. Interlocking Hooks.
Interlocking barricades allow you to create a line of barriers that cannot be broken down from the center. This allows for a more secure line. There are different standards in the spacing of the hooks. If you are purchasing barriers to match existing inventory, make sure you know the spacing. Be aware, some companies are selling steel barriers that were manufactured in China without any sort of technical drawing. These barriers may have odd hook sizes that will not fit any standard barrier. Make sure, when you order barriers to ask for one of the standard hook sizes. Read more about barrier hook variations. Also read about the near miss with Julia Roberts at the SAG Awards.
6. Barrier Identification.
Many facilities lose barriers over time because they are mistakenly taken by rental companies or adjacent businesses. If you are in a situation that can lead missing barriers, consider signage. The Blockader barrier has several signage options available.
7. Does your vendor know steel barriers?
There are a lot of companies selling steel barriers who have no real knowledge of what they are selling. Before making a significant investment in a steel crowd control system, it’s a good idea to talk to a company representative and cover the items on this article so you know you will be getting a quality product that will last.
The Tamis Corporation offers a variety of Blockader Steel Barriers and also our line of plastic barricades. If you want to talk about your particular application with a product specialist, give us a call today (412) 241-7161.