What is Traffic Calming?

Man hand changing the speed.
Traffic calming measures are typically put in place by local authorities to improve safety. Their goal is to reduce the speed at which vehicles travel and they tend to be placed on roads where there are high numbers of accidents or areas where there are a lot of small children, such as around schools. Residential areas also regularly host traffic calming measures.

The most recognisable way of slowing traffic is to install speed humps. They force vehicles to slow down effectively but can damage vehicles and cause problems for emergency services so are not always popular.

For areas with a steady stream of traffic, road-narrowing schemes such as build-outs and pinch points cause vehicles to slow down while roundabouts and islands will also improve traffic management on larger roads with more space.

There are also less intrusive traffic calming measures available which include textures added to a road surface which alert a driver by “rumbling” when they are going too fast and road markings which act as a prompt by providing a visual reminder to slow down.

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