Community Associations & Southwark & Lambeth Councils Community Safety Recent Posts Road Safety

All you need to know about speed humps – What do they do?

In response to residents’ questions, we have carried out some research on speed humps!  Here is a selection of information we have found about humps, incl sinusoidal humps.

The latter appear to give a smoother ride for cyclists and one of the documents also suggests that they reduce the number of complaints (presumably against vehicle and property damage).  The policies for using this type of hump have been in place for a number of years – the DFT docs, Traffic Advisory Leaflets date from 1998 and 2000, and there have been no revised versions since.    We originally had round humps in Turney but the practice in Southwark has been towards the use of smoother sinusoidal humps with a maximum height of 75mm, and new & replacement humps are sinusoidal.

Southwark Street Scene teams are taking a broader view of streetscapes and looking at a range of improvements and traffic measures including “shared space” rather than simply humps.

New cars/SUVs are better able to travel over humps and if you are a back seat passenger e.g. in black cab you get a more comfortable ride over sinusoidals.  There is a psychology about humps and their presence will help to slow traffic at least until drivers become accustomed to them.

Southwark must believe that they are serving a purpose in reducing speed otherwise they wouldn’t continue to install them but the 2010-2011 transport plan report suggests they are not popular.   The same report also indicates that Southwark’s road safety record improved from 1997-2007 but has since levelled off mainly due to increased cyclist casualties.   However so many other factors have contributed to improved road safety incl vehicle improvements.

Given some residents’ view that the new humps are leading to higher vehicle speeds, we could ask the councillors to put down a question about evidence of effectiveness of road humps in speed reduction in Southwark esp given SUVs, new cars.    They are considered to be the main measure for “enforcement” of 20mph.

If there is evidence of faster traffic in Turney & Burbage Roads, we should report this to the police and Safer Neighbourhood Team as they are equipped with technology to survey speeds.   We could also make a request under the next Cleaner, Greener, Safer round for an automatic speed control “ Your speed/slow down” sign in Turney Road.  This would have the disadvantage of more signs cluttering the street and we do not know the effectiveness of such signs.

Southwark will implement a borough-wide 20mph zone on non-TfL roads at some point soon, which might be accompanied by publicity, signage and improved enforcement measures.

Before the humps we had quite a lot of accidents, some of them very serious incl. one car that crashed into a house and burst into flames.   Does anyone have any evidence of increased accidents in the road?  I recall a resident’s car got bashed up  a year or so ago, and a few weeks ago there was debris from a car near the Turney/Burbage junction.

See the following reports for more detail: (traffic calming) (Sinusoidals) (RB of Maidenhead & Windsor site abt traffic calming)  (report on humps)

(Southwark – Scutari Road Improvements incl sinusoidal road humps). (good site on road technology and research)  (interesting report on delivery of the Southwark Transport Plan)

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