Go-Kart Barricades: All Your FAQs Answered

At OTW Safety, we love working with go-kart clients. After all, who doesn’t love go-karting? Whether you’re 16 or 56, it’s an absolute blast to get behind the wheel and race a few of your friends around the track. Owning and operating a go-kart course yourself can also be a heck of a lot of fun, but it does require hard work and diligent planning to maintain properly. Indeed, go-kart owners should strive to ensure the safety of their customers first and foremost  –– while also crafting exciting courses at the same time. One of the best ways to do that is to invest in high-quality go-kart barricades.

Whether you’re planning on opening up a new location, or you’re ready to switch things up, this helpful guide will answer all of your questions about purchasing the right go-kart barricades for your company.

go-kart barricade

WHAT TYPE OF BARRICADE SHOULD I BUY?

Most go-kart courses are delineated with barricades of some sort. In general, there are several types of barricades available to business owners on the market. They are: 

  • Concrete barricades. 
  • Metal barricades.
  • Plastic barricades. 

When it comes to creating a go-kart course, plastic barricades are the only safe option. Concrete barricades are far too heavy and dangerous to act as go-kart barricades. In fact, concrete barricades should only be used in construction zones that contain heavy machinery. Metal barricades aren’t safe either; they’re flimsy, they can develop jagged edges, and they’re simply not suited to lining a go-kart course. 

This means that the best choice is for business leaders to look to purchase plastic barricades for their course. Plastic barricades are able to absorb the impact from a crash and disperse it in a much safer fashion than either concrete or metal barricades. In fact, there’s plenty of evidence to suggest that plastic barricades are safer for motorists than concrete barricades in construction zones along roadsides as well.

Considering the fact that go-karts can reach 40-50 mph, and that go-karts typically don’t possess the same safety features of a traditional car, plastic barricades are also essential for minimizing injuries from accidents. Customers who have switched to our signature plastic barricades have seen benefits like increased safety, less vehicle damage, easier installation, and more compact storage.

HOW SHOULD I OUTLINE THE TRACK?

The best go-kart tracks present an enjoyable challenge while protecting the well-being of visitors. Unfortunately, some business owners don’t outline their tracks with barricades at all. Instead, they line their tracks with steel rails, which are then covered in old tires. In theory, the tires serve to absorb the impact in a crash, keep the steel rails standing, and prevent damage to the go-karts. In practice, though, these tire barriers are unreliable, susceptible to major wear, and potentially dangerous for drivers.

Plastic barricades, by contrast, are similar to the ones used on professional race tracks and highways. Low-profile, water-filled barricades are designed to absorb impact and make crashes less harmful.  

Plastic barricades can link together and form a continuous wall along the entire track, or they can be strategically placed along the more difficult sections of a course. Barricades will deflect when impact occurs (meaning they will move when struck by a high-speed vehicle) — this is much safer for drivers than hitting a static wall.

HOW DO PLASTIC BARRICADES PROTECT MOTORISTS?

As we’ve established above, plastic barricades disperse impact when hit by a moving vehicle, lessening the force felt by the driver. While this is a big aspect of plastic barricade safety, it is one of several safety benefits.

Another key component of go-kart barricade safety is visibility. Go-kart barricades should never inhibit the sightlines of a driver, and they should be easy to spot from a distance. In other words, they need to be low enough to the ground that a driver can see over them, and they must be bright enough to identify at all times. What’s more — and this might seem obvious — go-kart barricades should be able to link together to form a continuous wall. Any gaps at all in the course outline could confuse drivers and make the course more dangerous as a result. (This is a big reason why it’s not a good idea to only use cones or flags to delineate a go-kart course.)

The ideal barricade for most go-kart courses is the 24” low-profile barricade. This model has the unique capabilities required for use on go-kart courses. It is strong, sturdy, it sits low to the ground, and it comes in a range of bright colors –– including safety orange. Plus, along with being able to link together to form a continuous line, they contain a built-in space to attach extra safety items, like hazard lights.

HOW STRONG ARE PLASTIC BARRICADES?

Polyethylene, which is what we use to manufacture our barricades, is an extremely strong and versatile material. What’s more, all of our roadside barrier products have undergone stringent testing and meet standards set down from organizations like the FAA. (For reference, many airports also use the 24” low-profile barricade as well.) And while the 24” low-profile barricade only weighs about 35 lbs when empty, it can weigh as much as 350 lbs when filled with water. Some of our other barricade models can weigh up to 900 lbs when fully ballasted. To put it plainly, these are incredibly stable barricades that also offer long-term durability. Owners can expect their barricades to last for years.

ARE PLASTIC BARRICADES SUITABLE FOR OUTDOOR AND INDOOR USE?

Yes, absolutely. Consider, for instance, the 42” plastic jersey shape barrier. It has been successfully deployed in Northern Alaska and Canada, both places known for having harsher environments. Plastic barriers undergo extensive weather testing to ensure they hold up in even the most adverse conditions. 

On the other hand, plastic barricades are also capable of deployment indoors. They are stable and, when moved correctly, won’t leave marks on tile floors.

moveable go-kart barricade

CAN I MOVE PLASTIC BARRICADES?

After safety, the next significant advantage that plastic barricades hold over other barriers is their high-level of mobility. Yes, when ballasted, plastic barricades can weigh between 300-900 lbs. But when emptied, a single person can normally carry a plastic barricade on their own. Also, plastic barricades can even be moved with a forklift without removing the water ballast. Plastic barricades can therefore be moved around and rearranged with relatively short notice. They can be detached from other barricades and then be re-attached at a later time. So if you ever decide to alter the layout of a course, you can do so quickly and easily with plastic barricades. 

Plastic barricades aren’t just easy to install, they’re also simple to store. Many of our models can be folded and conveniently hung in storage areas.

DO PLASTIC BARRICADES HAVE OTHER USES?

The most obvious use of a plastic barricade at a go-kart site is, naturally, around the course itself. Yet, the truth is that plastic barricades have such versatility that course owners can use them for other purposes as well. For example, plastic barricades can be used in parking lots to direct traffic, to designate reserved areas, or to provide directions for passersby. They can also be used to section off certain areas such as those just for staff members.

Many sites use plastic barricades as a form of crowd control. If you have to set up long lines or direct lots of people for an event, plastic billboard barricades can help you do so effectively and safely. Since plastic barricades are sturdy and durable, they won’t fall over or form jagged edges like metal barriers. (This is an especially important point to remember since kids may sometimes climb on or interact with a barricade.)

Further, when it comes to crowd control barricades, you’ll have many more options to customize these barricades in unique colors and with unique signage. First, course owners can purchase barricades in a range of colors; some business owners like to match barricade designs with their brand colors. Course owners can also choose to place their logo on plastic barricades, or they can include advertisements from local sponsors to generate some extra revenue. Lastly, course owners may even decide to place messages on certain barricades, such as directions for new visitors to the course site.

For these reasons and more, plastic barricades are an investment that present tremendous value for money.

We’ve already covered the 24” low profile barricade, but course owners may also utilize any of the following barriers for their business: 

We also offer a number of safety accessories such as: 

OTW Safety Barricade Logo

OTW PLASTIC BARRICADES

At OTW Safety, we strive to create the highest quality plastic barricades for all of our clientele. We’ve worked with go-kart course owners for decades, and we understand their unique challenges and needs. That’s why our products are designed to be so safety-oriented and versatile. We’re proud to offer American-made, sustainable barricades. You can contact us here for more information or to place an order today: