Ireland: Steel rope vehicle restraint system recognized as dangerous

A vehicle restraint system consisting of posts through which steel cables are routed has been in use throughout the UK and Ireland since the early 2000s. It has now been officially classified as dangerous for motorcyclists.


It seems very surprising how it can take 20 years to classify the used restraint system as dangerous, but unfortunately, authorities often don’t work too quickly. The barrier is actually designed to prevent a car or other larger vehicle from entering the opposite lane. Fallen motorcyclists who could slide over the asphalt were not considered. This is exactly where the construction poses a considerable risk.


In July 2020, the Motorcycle Action Group NI (MAG) and the Department for Infrastructure (DfI) met to discuss the system. It was agreed that it can be dangerous for motorcyclists.


In the future, the DfI would like to install a system with a higher safety standard in locations with a high risk of motorcycle accidents, or first promote the development of a required systems. The DfI would like to work with local universities to investigate the problem and develop a barrier that is safer for motorcyclists but can still hold larger vehicles.


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