citizenrod bad design safety visual strips glass crash
citizenrod bad design safety visual strips glass crash

You have most likely noticed the white banding across glass doors. These bands are to stop people from crashing into the glass and hurting themselves. In some industries these bands are called ‘stupid strips’, where the ‘stupid’ refers to the people that would crash into the glass, had the strips not been there.

But if we think about it, it is not the users that are the stupid ones. It is not their fault that someone has decided to use an almost invisible material in a space where they need to walk through, all day long. No, in this case I would say the

designers are stupid.

The designers of building entrances know exactly what type of action happens there. They know people walk in and out through the space all day long. But they also know the characteristics of the materials they use. They know glass is transparent. They know it can be invisible. In fact that’s what they usually want, invisibility. I’m sure if they could have no doors, and yet still separate the inside from the outside, they would. In order to achieve this, they use glass.

But glass is transparent and therefore dangerous. So rather than design a better alternative, they compromise. They take their chances with the glass, and try to reduce the chance of people crashing through them, by adding a white strip across the panes. Now let’s be clear here, they don’t choose to add strips, as that is not part of their design, no, they are forced to add strips. In Australia it is the law that there be a sufficiently contrasting band across all glass walls and doors to prevent people from crashing into them.

So basically designers are spending time and money creating beautiful clean seamless invisible entrances……then whacking a sticker across them, tsk tsk tsk.

citizenrod bad design safety visual strips glass

Some designers are at least trying to do something about it. In the above photo, the white band has a pattern in it. I’m assuming it is not a random pattern, but rather one that is seen throughout the buildings interior in some manner, ie. it is part of their branding. With vinyl and digital printing these days there are endless variations on this technique that can be used, and they are not expensive either.

But is this the only way?

Here lies an opportunity waiting to be cracked. It’s not an easy one, so we might be waiting a while…


Citizenrod art design think

Citizenrod | art | design | think


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