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Rising to the occasion

The infamous bollards at St Mary’s Gate continue to claim more victims, this week with one of the bollards being damaged by a plucky driver. What do you think?

Published on December 11th 2006.


Rising to the occasion

The rising bollards at St Mary’s Gate have had their ups and downs since their installation in June.

This area was revealed as a city centre accident hotspot earlier this year, a claim that I can support having myself fallen victim to a drive by water pistol shooting incident there a couple of years ago.

So the bollards were fitted and cars were banishéd from St Mary’s Gate, with only the clever little metro buses fitted with electronic sensors being allowed to pass through. The bollards detect the sensors in front of the buses you see, and disappear into the ground to let the buses pass.

But some drivers have been chancing their luck by following in the wake of the buses, attempting to sneak through while the bollards have been down. Some have been lucky, some not so, as the now infamous cctv footage gloriously shows. Unlucky motorists have found their cars speared on the bollards as they rise up underneath them.

So, the bollards have made the city centre safer for pedestrians, while providing us all with plenty of hilarious moments watching the video footage of cheeky drivers getting their comeuppance on the poles. Surely a win-win situation for everyone except the cheeky car owners, some of whose cars have been written off as a result of their attempts to cheat the law.

Some are claiming that the bollards are unfair, and are causing undue damage to vehicles. In fact the system is in breach of The Department of Transport, who state that the bollards should be designed so that they cannot rise up whilst underneath a car.

A leaflet issued by The Department of Transport claims that ‘it is better to risk a certain amount of violation rather than put road users at risk.’

But the Town Hall said that a survey was carried out before the bollards were installed, which had been ‘in compliance with health and safety regulations’.

What do you think of the bollards, and the drivers that ignore the ‘no entry’ signs and attempt to sneak through behind the buses? Leave your comments in the form below.

Jayne Robinson

You can respond below or maybe talk about something else topical...

Comments and rants below.
Got an opinion? Click here to let us know what you think

Serves them right! The drivers are the ones in the wrong and they deserve it if they can't be bothered to follow the rules!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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The bollards have been put there for the safety of the pedestrians and the public in general. So drivers who ignore No Entry signs and get hoisted onto the bollards deserve all they get.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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I feel the bollards a very good idea, with the safty of people in mind, the individuals who choose to ignore the no entry sighns are getting what they deserve, I get very tired of people not taking responsibility for there own actions,if you take the risk, then take the result, good or bad.

Stacey Harper

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Don't remove them - I haven't laughed so hard in a long time than at those who think they are above the law. The rest of us manage to follow the signs and the inconvenience of sitting for hours on Deansgate - why shouldn't they! Well Done Manchester City Council!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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I am a driver/cyclist/train-user (and other meaningless labels), I believe the bollards were installed due to a high percentage of pedestrians being hit by the same selfish drivers who now try tailgating through them. I work in the city centre and I want to breath clean air and not have these ignoramous tw@ts flying a few inches past me, driving like they are on some sort of racetrack with no concern for other road users. Please install more bollards so we can watch these idiot drivers get what they deserve.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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I think the owners of the damaged cars deserve all they get - and let's see more of the footage! The last lot I saw was hilarious!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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These rising bollards are designed solely as a SECURITY implement, in essence to stop vehicles / car suicide bombs etc being driven at people or buildings Their use as an Anti-Car "Traffic calming" method of physical enforcement in a town centre is nothing short of CRIMINAL and a disgrace to the lunatic lefties of Manchester and Britain who are jealous of there fellow citizens with the skills and the wealth to enjoy the right to drive This is CLASS WAR taken to the next level, the level of actual VIOLENCE Reading these forums you can see the sheer glee of the new-age hippie set with their hand woven hemp *smash the machines* T-shirts revelling in the schadenfreud of assaulted, injured motorists and wilfully damaged veicles Whatever next ? are we one step away from car hating luddites using anti-vehicle mines to "protect" bus loving shoppers from our evil horseless carriages? How dangerously stupid can you get? the disabled badge holder in the silver fiesta from the video has every right to use that road to access her disabled parking bay, in sheer frustration she resorts to chasing a bus in and severely damaging her engine Everyone can see smoke belching from under her car in this video, how long before a damaged engine leaks petrol and explodes into a fireball endangering pedestrian life ? SHAME ON YOU MANCHESTER !

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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why do some people think they are so special as to flout the rules that most other drivers gladly follow? Im glad that many of these drivers are getting their comeuppance for their sheer arrogance and it makes me smile every time i see a car tangled up in a bollard, especially the egotistical 4x4 drivers that shouldnt be in cities anyway! They know the rules and the consequences of breaking them yet they are still foolish enough to think it cant happen to them and when it does try and blame others or the council etc etc its getting ridiculous! its not as if there are no signs up!! Mothers are even more foolish putting the safety of their children as well as themselves at risk! Its a traffic calming measure after all so its a great idea. Bring on the bollards! And fine those who think they are GOD!!

Karen Golston

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Essentially its willful damage to tax payers cars. The council can fit bollards which don't rise up under vehicles and therefore prevent the horrendous amount of damage caused by such. People have not just been hurt financially but also physically. If it was a private land owner then the HSE would have had them removed after the first incident. We pay our taxes and rightfully expect a duty of care from the council. It's ludicrous that these devices which are put in place to protect people are obviously doing the opposite.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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Those who are complaining are obviously trying to save face for their utter stupidity. I hope the council don't back down and remove them, if they do unfortunately one day cars dashing down that section of road, oblivious to the throngs of shoppers will run someone over. Lets keep it pedestrianised for all our sakes!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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I think I should state clearly at the start that I am a regular car driver. I bollards are there for a purpose and are clearly signed. Anyone who misses the signs probably should not be driving on grounds of poor sight or undue care and attention. Anyone who gets caught knowingly taking a risk has only themselves to blame. There are no valid reasons for excuses.

James Henry

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Violating drivers get everything they deserve, these are probably the same people who park in disabled bays or drive along using their hand held mobiles. They have no regard for anyone else.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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I Think they are bloody grand, and When I saw a stupid 4x4 impaled on these a few months back and the silly bint who was driving it looking outraged and red faced I laughed, and laughed, whats the matter love? not get yourself close enough to Primark for some Cheap Chic?- WELL WRONG END OF TA'AN DARLIN! Mind you, She may have had a use for such a vehicle as you could tell she was the off road type, a bit ROUGH if you know what I mean?! Keep them, They do a brilliant job and make that part of town a much nicer place to navigate as there are less fumes and more space for people to spread out.

Rod User

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I think they are justified, how can you complain? The only people whingeing are those blatantly flouting the law! It's about time those that do, pay (literally) for their crimes, as more often than not people find a way to get round traffic offences. Well all I can say is well done DoT, and if you want to keep you car in good condition, don't break the law!

Sandra Drury

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There should be more bollards around in Manchester, just for the entertainment value. I have no sympathy for the drivers, but do agree that the bollards should come with a soundn effect and lighting......also publish the videos of the best on a web site

Stu Bailey

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What about the buses that have been impaled no one is mentioning this and they have the authority to pass through the bollard. The bollards are a good idea but the ones installed are dangerous and not fitted to the safest recommended highways approval

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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keep the bollards its hilarious that people are so stupid!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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My only complaint is that whilst my partner has witnessed one such hapless motorist, I have yet to be similarly enterained!! More fool the drivers - it is clearly sign-posted and keeps the idiots off the road for a bit whilst their cars are repaired!

Peter Croll

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I think you should tell us where we can watch the videos to give us all a laugh. People drive over them at their own risk!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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The road was a nightmare before the bollards. These drivers deserve what they get. This is the best sort of punishment, its instant, caught on camera and they look very foolish to the passing public. If you cant do the time dont do the crime.

Matthew Pringle

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Thank-you Manchester City Council!!! I totally agree with the bollards in St Marys Gate, having almost been hit there by a driver going too fast before. We city centre residents and shoppers are fed up with drivers driving too fast in the city centre and finally something has been done to prioritse the safety of pedestrians! Drivers who tail gate, quite frankly are plain stupid. In any case, to try and tail gate the bus's they must, in some cases, have to accelerate way too fast for such a pedestrian area anyway!! To the drivers in the city centre: PLEASE DRIVE SLOWLY, THIS IS A CITY CENTRE NOT BRANDS-HATCH!!!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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If you break the law you have to take the consequences. However unfair it may seem. Simple: Dont drive over the bollards and you wont get speared!!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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I am a car driver and I think its all about being aware of the road traffic signals and not assuming that because a bus can get through you can. Its basic highway code stuff! On the other hand I do think that the disabled car park bays should be moved so not to encourage disabled drivers to park as they do have exception to general rules and I think they should be blanked out. Overall I think the bollards should stay to keep pedestrians safe and keep the pollution down in the high pedrestrian zones.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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Bollards are well signed, anyone stupid enough to ignore the signs deserves the damage to their vehicle, we should sue the driver for trying to damage the bollards, definitely good entertainment.

Keith Egerton

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The warning signs are so obvious and strident that only the half-blind, half-drunk or fully stupid could miss them. There are always a few cocky idiots who think they can beat the system. They're simply ASKING for a bollard up'em, I say.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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Bollards 10 . . .lazy drivers 0 . . .they must be the same people who park on double yellow lines outside shops & restaurants, walking is for those "other2 people . . . . Power up the bollards, add some vey loud sound effects ( Harrier jump jet take off .!! ) . . .and publish a weekly broadsheet with pictures of the people who get caught . . .Well done Manchester Council.

Ronster Harrison

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The bollards are absolutely fantastic. Finally a just reward for those people who think rules don't apply to them. These are the people who park in disabled bays at the supermarket, drive down the motorway hard shoulder in traffic jams, drive down bus lanes, don’t have insurance, tax, mot’s or even licences and are a general menace to other road users. Nine times out of ten they get away with their misdemeanours - -but not when Manchester City Council are on the case. Keep up the good work MCC. From the numerous articles written about the subject there have been many different excuses provided by the guilty parties, sorry I mean victims. However, the fact remains that there are two huge illuminated No Entry signs at each entry point. Perhaps if these people can’t read road signs they should not get behind the wheel of a car.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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The bollards are fantastic, there are too many cars in the city taking far too much priority. Anything that gives some priority back to pedestrians is a good idea.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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its a load of bollards!!!

Brian Hilton

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Much like the National Lottery, the bollards are a tax on stupidity. Long may they continue - they have provided us with entertainment on many a wet shopping expedition.

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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I think that the drivers who try and dodge the bollards get everything they deserve. The bollards are a much safer place for pedestrians and long may they continue!

Anonymous (contact details provided)

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Passing the ballards the other week, i noticed an ambulance speeding up the road. They came to halt at the ballards. Five minutes later, they did manage to get through, but they had spent ages waving some device near the sensor, that clearly wasn't working efficiently. My only thought, was i hope the poor bugger they're trying to get to isn't too seriously injured!

Kelly Ormesher

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Anyone stupid enough to tailgate a bus passed a neon sign saying "buses only" and over the top of well sign posted bollard should not be on the road. I've seen a few people have 'accidents' on them - it's an inteligence test and they've obviously failed. Fuck em i say, take their license off them til they learn the rules of the road and charge them for any repair work to the damaged bollard - their stupidity shouldn't be paid for by our council tax.

Tristan Welch

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