Fences serve many purposes due to the ways they can be used. Some fill more decorative and aesthetic needs, while others must be strong and secure to prevent entry onto a property. Many that must be strong, such as the types installed around government buildings, some commercial properties, and even apartment complexes must be both secure and crash-proof.
This measure of durability is the "K-rating" of a fencing installment. To reduce the need for expensive fence replacement due to accidents or attempts to breach a fence, owners must consider options with higher K-ratings.
What Is K-Rating?
K-rating is a strength rating given to fences or gates based on a number of factors. It is a crash test certification rating assigned by the U.S. Department of State (DOS) that indicates an installation’s ability to withstand the force of a large vehicle crashing head-on into the fence at various speeds.
Ratings are based on the amount of damage the barrier receives in these crash tests and whether the vehicle is able to penetrate the barrier or not. It can also be a good indicator of the type of damage a fence can withstand without needing fence replacement.
How Is K-Rating Measured?
All crash tests that measure resistance to ramming and impacts are done using the same crash conditions for every type of fencing. In these tests, a 15,000-pound gross weight pickup truck is crashed into the fence at various speeds to determine whether the barrier is strong enough to prevent the truck from completely penetrating it.
A DOC certification means the stopping power of the installation is great enough to prevent passage of the vehicle greater than 36 inches behind the cab through the pre-impact level of the upright barrier.
According to these specifications, there are three different K-rating certifications that a security fence or gate may receive:
- K4 Rating - Stops a vehicle traveling 30 MPH
- K6 Rating - Stops a vehicle traveling 40 MPH
- K8 Rating - Stops a vehicle traveling 50 MPH
How Are K-Rated Fences Used?
For certain secure installations, a K-rated fence is more desirable and may even be required. Business and homeowners who wish to protect their property to the highest level may find these fences to be a worthwhile investment. They can prevent the possibility of someone driving through their fence, either accidentally or intentionally.
Due to the increased security that a K-rated fence has over most other types, these barriers usually surround federal and state government buildings, military campuses, law enforcement buildings, and many commercial properties. They are also used to protect power plants, fuel depots, and other similar facilities.
Also known as anti-ram fences, K-rated steel fencing is the most secure option in perimeter borders that any home or business owner could choose to protect their property. A K-rated fence will reduce potential risks that other barriers cannot and reduce the need for expensive fence replacement at some point. These strong and sturdy enclosures can even be attractive. This provides owners of all types of properties the most in terms of strength, security, and great looks all in one product!