Premark – Anti-Skid

We have been contacted by Preformed Markings, a company that makes “Premark Anti-Skid”, which is a high performance anti-slip material that works extremely well on steel and iron.

Manhole covers have always been a danger for the safe riding of motorcyclists because of the combination of being slippery and placed in the wrong position (in the middle of a bend) or poorly maintained (sunken into the road or loose).

There are various solutions from non-metallic covers and other skid resistance/anti-slip materials.

As mentioned “Premark Anti-Skid” is a high performance anti-slip material and for example, has been subject to testing in Norfolk on the A140 for over three and a half years.

The findings of this test are in a report which describes Premark as, “a retrofitted material which is site applied to existing chamber covers.” “Premark” was tested beside another anti-slip material “Griptop” the report states that the cost is, “On average £640 for ‘Griptop’ installation and £130 for “Premark”. This includes materials, installation and traffic management.”

In their communication with Right To Ride, Premark comments that “As far as durability is concerned, the material has been installed for over three and a half years, and is still performing extremely well, and still providing a skid resistance higher than untreated iron covers.”

With regards to cost, Andy Price from “Premark Anti-Skid” says, “I think we also have to be realistic that this will only affect new installations and not existing covers which may not be replaced for another 10 years.  These covers need remedial treatment to enhance their performance, but we have to be equally sensitive to the costs of such a scheme.”

“Premark” has gained support from BSI (British Standards Institute) that it does interfere or infringe the quality standard of traditional castings (covers).

Being realistic we at Right To Ride would agree and through our own Roads Service and the motorcycle safety forum endeavour to help deliver action measures in the DOE (Department of the Environment’s) Road Safety Strategy To 2020.

These include safer roads, consideration of the needs and vulnerability of motorcyclists when designing new roads and implementing safety measures on existing roads and the provision of specific route treatments for popular motorcycle ‘runs’.

“Premark Anti-Skid”, is also working with the service cover industry to try and get an enhancement (adding to existing covers) accepted as a standard requirement. The standard for covers has been under review since 1999, and is now in its final stages, but the latest draft has greatly reduced the originally proposed Skid Resistance Value (SRV) for covers.

Andy Price from Premark says, “The Highways Agency (Great Britain) in HA104/09 proposed a polished SRV (worn value) value of 60.  This would suggest that the unpolished (new) SRV would be somewhere in the region of 70+.  The standards technical committee have submitted an unpolished SRV of half of that, which is disgraceful to say the least.  I have objected to this figure, as have many of my colleagues.”

He concludes “We are currently dealing with a large number of Road Safety Officers throughout the country” and have been in contact with persons here in Northern Ireland but more importantly adds:

“With support from motorcycling associations and organisations, we can all make a difference.”

Information and Links

“Premark Anti-Skid” at
“Premark Anti-Skid” – The difference in slip resistance between the highway and service covers in the highway – pdf 286kb – Click Here
“Premark Anti-Skid” – Brochure – pdf 1.7mb – Click Here
“Premark Anti-Skid” – Highways Magazine Editorial – pdf 191kb – Click Here

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  1. Hi
    Just an update on the revision of the standard that relates to manhole covers.
    We have gained support from the Federation of European Motorcyclists Associations (FEMA) and The European Road Federation (ERF) regarding the poor skid resistance requirement as specified in the draft revison of EN124.
    Aline Delhaye, the General Secretary for FEMA has expressed her interest in joining together with ERF and GEVEKO in making a positive change to the standard, and thus making road safer for all users.
    There is bound to be objections from certain parties within the decision making committee, but I would like to think that we could all work together to lobby for change, both in the standard and in the mindset of highways practitiors.
    Thanks, Andy
    Right To Ride – Comments: Fantastic news Andy keep up the push for the standards.

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