About the Urban Crash Barrier project
In 2000 the Injury Surveillance & Control Unit of the Department for Health and Ageing completed a research project on crash barriers installed to protect roadside diners and pedestrians from out-of-control vehicles.
A survey of roadside dining venues was conducted and evidence from several serious accidents was examined.
A new energy-absorbing bollard design was developed from the research findings and the results of an extensive program of crash testing of prototype bollards with a specially designed test trolley. The new accredited design, the Urban Crash Barrier, is now manufactured and available throughout Australia.
As part of the project the Injury Surveillance & Control Unit in collaboration with Transport SA and the private agency, Injury Prevention SA Inc. produced a Draft Standard and a set of guidelines for local government on the design and installation of Urban Crash Barriers.
- Roadside dining protection: A Guideline for Local Government Authorities in South Australia (Transport SA) - http://www.transport.sa.gov.au/publications/safety.asp
- Draft Standards for crash-barrier systems for pedestrian protection 2000 (PDF 545KB)
- Roadside Dining Venues: The Results of a Survey in Adelaide and Surrounding Suburbs 2000 (PDF 32KB)
An acceptable Urban Crash Barrier must pass rigorous testing by a qualified crash-test laboratory. Each test consists of a controlled impact by either a production vehicle of a defined mass or a standard trolley.
Result of a test with a production vehicle
The energy of this crash was absorbed by the bending of both the barrier and the vehicle. The potential bending of the vehicle is limited. If the barrier did not bend, occupants would be at greater risk.
Result of a test with a standard trolley
This trolley has rebounded after collision with an Urban Crash Barrier. The energy of the collision has been absorbed by the bending of both the barrier and the yellow impactor of the trolley.
Traditional ways of delineating dining areas typically do not provide adequate crash protection. Pictured below are some characteristically inadequate structures for stopping an out of control vehicle.
Untested metal structures
These untested bollards shattered when struck by an out of control car.
Planter boxes will not stop an out of control vehicle, and may become flying projectiles.
Planter boxes do not provide barrier protection. However they do have some legitimate uses. You may wish to delineate pedestrian walkways, block inappropriate crossings, and route pedestrian flow by use of planter boxes. Remember though that you are creating a potential hazard. This hazard can be significantly reduced if you design the planter boxes from materials (rubber, polyurethane, some types of plastic, mild steel) that will not shatter in a crash situation. Cast aluminium, cast iron, concrete and ceramics are not suitable materials. The design of planter boxes should prevent them being launched by an impacting car. It is also important that the planter box crumple and not act as a launching ramp for the impacting car.
Planter boxes did not stop an out of control car from crashing into these tables outside a popular restaurant.
A brick wall will not stop an out of control vehicle.
Glass panels will not stop an out of control vehicle.
A raised dining area may or may not stop an out of control vehicle. A qualified crash safety engineer is required to assess height and structural strength.
Transport policy advice: Transport SA
Local Government Association of South Australia