Yorkshire-based security manufacturer Heald Ltd has been appointed by the New Orleans Office of Homeland Security to secure the historic French Quarter with its Matador-4 security bollards.
Heald, based in Hornsea, is a manufacturer of hostile vehicle mitigation systems, which protect some of the world’s high profile locations including embassies, airports and shopping centres.
The project, which is part of a wider $40 million citywide security investment, will see the installation of 22 Matadors to secure several intersections within the French Quarter, which hosts events such as New Orleans’ famous Mardis Gras.
The Matador bollards will replace temporary measures used by the city, which included movable police bollards. The bollards will go up nightly in keeping with city rules that close off stretches of the popular French Quarter boulevard exclusively to pedestrians. Otherwise, they will only be used to block intersections either by a city ordinance or during special events.
New Orleans Homeland Security director Aaron Miller said: “What we’ve seen in Nice, what we saw just several weeks ago in New York City, is that vehicle attacks against pedestrians are become more common across the country and across the world.
“As a result, cities are taking protective action to mitigate against that risk where it’s necessary. We see a large concentration of pedestrians in the French Quarter, particularly on Bourbon Street. It offers what we consider to be an iconic or symbolic target.”
To ensure the bollards are in keeping with the surroundings, they will be customisable with black matte coverings upon completion of the full project.
Heald managing Director Debbie Heald MBE said: “Working closely with one of our USA distributors, we are delighted that we have been able to provide an effective security solution to secure both residents and tourists visiting the French Quarter in New Orleans.
“It has been a pleasure to work with the New Orleans Home Security Department along with our distributor to help them identify the best solution to fit the changing needs of the area while ensuring they were in keeping with surroundings.”