BMF partners with Preformed Markings to tackle dangerous manhole covers

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Published on 9 March 2016 by Tom Wadlow

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Filed under categories: BMF News, Features

Car drivers barely think about it, but motorcyclists know that manhole covers are a contentious issue.

For many years, the subject of polished iron manhole covers and highway castings has been broadly ignored. These seemingly unavoidable hazards, which, after years of being polished by traffic, are more at home with professional skaters than with road users, are now under scrutiny, as a contributing factor to national statistics relating to those road users who are killed or seriously injured. BMF's Graeme Hay looks into the problem and details an important new partnership: 

As riders we all know of the hazard that a polished manhole cover presents, especially when wet. It is the sudden change of skid resistance that really starts a skid and whilst not every one of the 10 Million estimated iron covers is a problem, there are those which are placed at a point where they are all but unavoidable to the cornering or braking motorcycle.

WATCH THIS SPACE: The full feature and product test report will be available in the Spring issue of Rider, out at the end of March. 

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Preformed Markings provides a simple solution

There are many solutions to this problem but all of them involve digging-out the iron covers and replacing them with either a new iron cover, just the same or a non-slip coated cover. These cost around £100 to £280 each but the excavation requires traffic lights or road closures etc, often for a day or more. The product offered by Preformed Markings is as durable as a coated cover, can be installed in less than 30 minutes and requires no excavation with its associated noise etc. Oh, and the coating can be supplied for around £20 for each cover. A 30 minute installation should cost around £75 and several covers, close to each other can be done in a single visit.

The coating lasts for years; if and when it wears away, you just do it again. How good is it? In 2013 the iron coves on the NW 200 circuit were all treated with this process. Will that do you?

I have been trying to think of ways of getting the message about this affordable solution to the decision makers in the seventy plus roads authorities across the UK. It’s no good sending a letter to the Chief Officers. I know that such letters just become lost in each councils system and BMF members want to know that the letter is going directly to the desk of the person who decides. I cannot do this for you because I don’t know who each of these engineers is.

The guys at Preformed Markings, on the other hand do know these people and have offered to do this job for the BMF. The trade-off is a simple one: I am writing some words to explain the problem of slippery polished iron covers to specifying and maintenance engineers.

These words will appear, with the BMF brand on the technical and sales information used by the firm in marketing this product. Not only is there no cost to BMF members, there is actually an income as I am really pleased to confirm the Preformed Markings ltd is joining the BMF as a Corporate Gold Member.

Make sure you read the full feature in Rider magazine. 

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