bollards in driveway of residential home in Toronto

New viral video shows effectiveness of bollards in combating car theft in Toronto

A video posted to Reddit Toronto showing bollards in a residential driveway preventing an attempted theft of a car is going viral as Torontonians continue to look for answers to the increase in stolen vehicles.

 

Retractable bollards work. The only thing is, it’ll cost you.

The social media account ‘CostcoFindsCanada’ also recently shared a video that shows a set of manual retractable bollards for sale for $569.99.

Bollards are vertical steel posts that are installed on a private driveway. Users can use an app or a handheld remote to pull them up when they want to secure their car (to completely block a vehicle’s movement) and push them down when they’re ready to drive.

These posts are typically used in parking lots or car dealerships to keep vehicles away from pedestrian walkways, to prevent access to certain areas, or for parking control and security. They’re commonplace in Europe and have only recently become more popular in Canada at private residences.

Ontario Bollards have been spotted for sale at several Costco locations across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), and there are other options in the area. Some local asphalt sealing companies offer residential bollard installation. Bollard Boys GTA installs security bollards at residential homes for about $2,000 a piece. Their manual bollards are locked with a key and are manually retracted up and down, while their automatic residential bollards are controlled through an app or control system, and automatically retract up and down.

In a recent interview with CTV, the company says they’ve been receiving requests for service across the city and throughout North America.

“We haven’t had any stolen vehicles after an installation,” Bollard Boys co-founder Stephan Bordun told the outlet.

In addition to bollards, the company also suggests installing surveillance cameras to monitor driveways, set-up alarm systems, and ensure driveways are well-lit.

Despite the costs, a recent video showcasing these units at Costco has generated a lot of interest from Canadians, who are  wondering everything about how these posts perform in the winter (most companies state they are waterproof and rated for -35°C), or whether thieves could just drive a stolen vehicle around the bollards and onto the lawn.

Toronto Police Service (TPS) data show that car thefts in the city have increased drastically in recent years. Between 2014 and 2017, theft reports were relatively stable (with anywhere between 3400 and 3600 reports per year), in 2018, the number crept up to 4804 thefts; in 2021, there were 6642 thefts, and last year, the number jumped to 12,262 thefts.

To disrupt networks responsible for high-risk auto thefts, the Provincial Ontario Carjacking Joint Task Force (PCJTF), a collaborative leadership between the Toronto Police Service and the Ontario Provincial Police, was set up last September. As of January this year, their efforts have led to 89 arrests, the recovery of 109 vehicles, and 554 charges laid.

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