Slippery glass on Venice bridge creates multiple injuriesFor once I am almost lost for words, how can one of the world’s most renowned architects make such fundamental errors, I am truly shocked. The multi-million € Constitution Bridge at Venice has a major slip problem; even the locals don’t like to use it in dry weather. Glass is a surface that has very low levels of Coefficient of Friction (CoF is how grip is measured, there are various methods which I will go through in a later blog post), it does not allow pedestrians to get ‘purchase’ on the surface, choosing glass for a major public thoroughfare could either be considered brave or stupid, dependent on your choice. To make matters worse the glass is used on an arched bridge so now not only do you have a surface with a very low CoF level but you also have an incline, any incline decreases levels of grip. The Venetian authorities are regularly changing the glass panels but merely replacing them like-for-like, this is not an effective strategy. When the empirical evidence shows that customers are suffering injuries then this is the time to urgently act! What would I suggest? I would recommend urgently conducting a Pendulum CoF test on the surfaces. Based on the figures I would enact an immediate remedial plan to increase the CoF level, I would use our transparent safety-grip anti slip tape which would provide perfect clarity for the glass flooring yet also provide a guaranteed CoF level far in excess of any recommendations. When will architects realise that slippage is a huge problem that causes injuries and often deaths? The risks can be managed if we simply focus slightly less on the aesthetics and more on function. For more information please look at the following news articles; http://www.thesundaytimes.co.uk/sto/news/world_news/article1364671.ece http://veneziablog.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/calatravas-troubled-bridge-over-grand.html
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