Hostile Vehicle Mitigation – What Is It & How We Can Protect Pedestrians

What is Hostile Vehicle Mitigation and How We Can Protect Pedestrians From Vehicle Attacks

Robust bollards are an essential component of modern urban life. With a long-standing history of guarding pedestrians and assisting with traffic control, these sturdy hostile vehicle mitigation barriers have since evolved into a necessary protector against the threat of vehicle attacks.

Effective hostile vehicle mitigation bollards are both unassuming and controlling, guiding the flow of vehicles while also managing foot traffic in the area. Busy city spaces bring people and cars closer than ever, making the threat of accidents or attacks a serious issue faced by contemporary urban planners.

The following guide outlines the importance of pedestrian bollards for safety in a time when vehicular threats are on the rise, and how hostile vehicle mitigation barriers can effectively shield vulnerable passers as well as control vehicle access.

Understanding Hostile Vehicle Threat to Pedestrians

Unsettling statistical data showcases a continued increase in vehicle-related incidents that involve pedestrians in public spaces. There have been an alarming 321 road fatalities in New South Wales in 2023 to date, and this constant threat of vehicular attacks is changing the way we think about urban terror, and keeping people safe in our streets.

The key to pedestrian safety is balancing both accessibility and practical safety measures within urban design, making sure the city environment stays operative while also protecting them against potential threats. 

As the demand for increased protection and fortification of pedestrian areas grows, all stakeholders involved must collaborate on creating efficient public spaces that don’t limit access, but rather increase their security to both drivers and passers-by.

Bollards – The Frontline Defence

Bollards are not just metal posts sitting on our streets, they are silently guarding us by guiding traffic, protecting passersby, and preventing accidents. 

One devastating, and preventable, incident this past September in Melbourne’s CBD on Bourke Street shows just how powerful well-placed bollards can be. A driver killed one and injured 5 others after driving on the wrong side of the road, before hitting several cars as well as pedestrians at a tram stop with their vehicle. 

Another upsetting scene took place in Sydney back in 2020, when 9 were injured and one woman was killed after a car drove into a busy cafe. While the reasons for these horrendous events may vary, the reality is crucial bollard placement could have prevented the loss of life in these incidents.

Types of Hostile Vehicle Mitigation Bollards and Their Applications

The unique circumstances of each urban area occupied by both pedestrians and vehicles can require specific bollard types with their effective functionality:

Fixed Bollards

Fixed bollards are visible throughout each inner city space, silently protecting public safety by acting as a robust barrier in the event of a vehicle intruding into a high-traffic pedestrian 


Designed to withstand intensive collisions, immovable fixed bollards can stop cars, trucks, and everything in between – keeping people consistently safe from the threat of vehicle attacks. 

Retractable Bollards

The ability to control vehicle access is fully within your reach, thanks to retractable bollards. Both public and privately owned spaces and properties can prevent unwanted cars from entering, while also allowing controlled access when needed.

This inherent flexibility is ideal for entry points, secure buildings, and areas that transition between pedestrianised zones and areas with vehicle access (such as unloading and offloading deliveries).

Semi-automatic rising bollards can be easily raised and lowered by approved personnel, delivering controlled access and effective traffic flow with a combination of manual operation and automation. 

Decorative Protection 

For those looking to combine reliable pedestrian safety with aesthetic appeal in public spaces, bollard designs like the City Protector provide superior crash protection from vehicles while supplying options such as colour, shape, and design, to smoothly integrate with the surrounding street.

Combining practical instalments with safety features is a huge boon with pedestrian safety barriers. Options like robust planters, benches, rubbish bins, and bicycle racks all allow for enhanced public security by becoming tried-and-tested crash barriers, all while making the best use of the shared space.

Integrating Hostile Vehicle Mitigation Bollards into Urban Design

Effective urban design is both practical and aesthetic, and bollards are no different. While remaining focused on the reliable safety elements of each pedestrian safety barrier, quality bollard design allows it to blend in seamlessly with the cityscape while acting as a strategically placed protector against vehicle attacks.

One area where bollards are singularly impressive is the flow of pedestrians. Careful placement does not inhibit foot traffic or the access of emergency vehicles, while simultaneously preventing dangerous vehicle incidents from harming pedestrians.

By working together, skilled security experts and talented urban designers can control vehicle access and crowd flow while also enhancing the surrounding urban environment and its architectural nuances.

Beyond Safety: Additional Benefits of Bollards

Bollards offer more than a simple protective barrier. Retaining the orderliness of public spaces is an important facet of urban planning, and the right pedestrian bollards for safety can act as vehicle traffic management tools, organise foot traffic, denote pedestrian zones, and enhance safety in busy areas.

Integrating bollards throughout a city environment has many added benefits:

  • Less traffic congestion – controlled flow of traffic means reduced traffic for everyone. 
  • Encourages walking – pedestrianised areas are not only nicer to spend time in, but they minimise our reliance on vehicles, therefore promoting a healthier lifestyle.
  • Improved public safety – redirecting pedestrian paths and preventing vehicles from accessing areas with lots of people, whether by accident or not, helps boost overall public safety.
  • Reduce pollution – fewer vehicles in areas with lots of foot traffic means reduced air pollution and emissions in city spaces.

The Importance of Robust Pedestrian Safety Barriers

The once-simple bollard has become more advanced and important than ever in our busy modern society, combining market-leading technology with durable materials for superior protective results… now becoming the hostile vehicle mitigation bollard. Hostile vehicle mitigation barriers are needed now more than ever, and tough truck-stoppers to in-ground planters can provide peace of mind when it comes to enhanced urban safety. 

Security experts, city planners and designers agree on the need to continually adapt to evolving barriers and threats to public safety – collaborating on superior safety bollards can enhance not only our shared urban areas but also peace of mind against dangerous vehicle attacks. 

Premium Safety Bollards From Ezi Security 

Discover a wide range of reliable pedestrian safety barriers from Ezi Security, and help improve the security of urban spaces from the potential harm of vehicle attacks. As long-standing leasing providers of reliable security services, from perimeter security solutions to ongoing support and maintenance, Ezi Security are specialists in vehicle and pedestrian access and control.

Browse the broad selection of pedestrian safety barriers and bollards online now.