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Thread: Study shows kids who live near speed bumps are safer

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Plus
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    Study shows kids who live near speed bumps are safer

    Headline from from the Inadianapolis Star, Friday, Nov 19, 2004
    By Valerie Reitman, Los Angeles Times

    Children living within a block of a speed bump have about a 50 percent lower risk of being injured or killed by a moving vehicle in their neighborhood than do their peers, researchers have found.

    Dr. June Tester, a pediatric resident at Children's Hospital in Oakland, Calif., led a five-year study involving 100 children, ages 14 and younger, who were struck by vehicles within a quarter-mile of their homes and brought to the hospital's emergency room. She compared them with 200 children who were treated at the hospital for other conditions.

    The children who had been struck by cars were less likely to live within one block of a speed bump than those of the same age and sex treated on the same day.

    The most likely group to be struck was boys ages 5 to 7.

    "A lot of people talk about the importance of educating children to look both ways before they cross and to not run out in traffic," Tester said. " It's even smarter to think of modifications to the environment that will benefit many generations."
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  2. #2
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Great.....

    Now every citizen activist in the City will be beating down my door to get speed humps installed on their street regardless......maybe that is the solution, these things are placed in every roadway, regardless of need or studies.....even major arterials and collector roadways......I can picture it now.....HUMP LOCK (the new grid lock, only worse....)
    Skilled Adoxographer

  3. #3
    moderator in moderation Suburb Repairman's avatar
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    Now, they need to do this same study on all of the other traffic calming options (narrower roads, neck-downs, chicanes, etc.) and how they can accomplish similar safety improvements so we aren't getting assaulted with people begging for speed bumps on their street.

    "Oh, that is all well and good, but, voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country."

    - Herman Göring at the Nuremburg trials (thoughts on democracy)

  4. #4
    We have a famous saying here in wisconsin (ok not that famous but it shuts people up). "If you want speed bumps you won't get your road plowed in the winter" It works like a charm.

    Suburb Repairman hit it on the head. Look at all of the traffic calming measures, not just the most annoying one.
    "I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me, no matter how dumb my suggestions are."

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  5. #5

    Emergency Response

    The Charlotte fire dept is now blaming speedbumps for extending response times. From watching some of the local drivers I do not see how speedbumps help at all. Full acceleration up to the bump, jam brakes, bounce bounce, then full acceleration. The upside is that most vehecles wil not take this type of abuse. BTW, as a dump truck driver, these bumps are not that bad if you plan for them, regulate your speed, and drive like you have a little sense. Oh, that's what they are for!!!!

  6. #6
    Cyburbian The One's avatar
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    Alert

    This just in: Other somewhat obvious headlines....

    Study finds that traffic lights and stop signs SAVE LIVES....
    also:

    Did you know that vehicle brake systems save lives......
    or

    Seat belts help too.....ha ha ha....
    Skilled Adoxographer

  7. #7
    Cyburbian silentvoice's avatar
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    I don't want to sound cold, but it seems that children nowadays are overly protected by these things, they loose the ability to look after themselves.

    When we were young, there weren't padestrain traffic lights, crossings, or bumps near schools, but we learned how to cross the roads anyway. It wasn't as if the cars weren't as many or weren't speeding 20 years ago. But were there as much fatalities? Now we protect them so much, yet accidents still happen. Why?

    For 3 years during elementary school i had to cross a 8 lane arterial road with an island in the middle to get home. The trick is just to cross ONE lane at a time!

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    I don't know, maybe all it shows is that parents who buy homes near speed bumps are more concerned about their kids to begin with and don't let them run willy-nilly out into the street. The study seems to be looking to confirm a hypothesis and does not appear, on the surface, to account for possible confounding factors. I think that the degree of involvement of the parents generally matters more than other details. The real reason kids are ending up hurt more is because we are substituting protective THINGS for human involvement. There is no substitute for a caring adult teaching a kid how to cope with their environment, whatever it contains.
    Last edited by Michele Zone; 19 Nov 2004 at 5:00 PM.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian Breed's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Michele Zone
    I don't know, maybe all it shows is that parents who buy homes near speed bumps are more concerned about their kids to begin with and don't let them run willy-nilly out into the street. The study seems to be looking to confirm a hypothesis and does not appear, on the surface, to account for possible confounding factors. i think that the degree of involvement of the parents generally matters more than other details. The real reason kids are ending up hurt more is because we are substituting protective THINGS for human involvement. There is no substitute for a caring adult teaching a kid how to cope with their environment, whatever it contains.
    Well said... I was trying to figure out how to word my thoughts... I think you nailed them.
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  10. #10
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Suburb Repairman
    Now, they need to do this same study on all of the other traffic calming options ...

    Thank you! The last town I worked for spend $XXXX for two "portable" speed bumps that they could nail into the pavement. While effective at slowing traffic, they did a lame arse job of actually informing people when they would be installed, and had several insurance claims from people driving at night, doing the speed limit, and ripping the undercarraige off their cars. There were other options, some most cost effective, but one lame dork alderman convinced a committe to do this against our recommendations. The final costs are still beiong tallied.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian Achernar's avatar
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    Yes, however....

    Quote Originally posted by Michele Zone
    I don't know, maybe all it shows is that parents who buy homes near speed bumps are more concerned about their kids to begin with and don't let them run willy-nilly out into the street. The study seems to be looking to confirm a hypothesis and does not appear, on the surface, to account for possible confounding factors.
    If that were true, wouldn't it apply to other injuries as well? The study says, "The children who had been struck by cars were less likely to live within one block of a speed bump than those of the same age and sex treated on the same day." Therefore the children who had fallen out of trees, gotten shot, eaten rat poison, and everything else, were more likely to live within one block of a speed bump.

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Breed's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Achernar
    If that were true, wouldn't it apply to other injuries as well? The study says, "The children who had been struck by cars were less likely to live within one block of a speed bump than those of the same age and sex treated on the same day." Therefore the children who had fallen out of trees, gotten shot, eaten rat poison, and everything else, were more likely to live within one block of a speed bump.
    It would be interesting to see a study of the location of speed bumps and the location of kids who have "fallen out of trees, gotten shot, eaten rat poison," etc.

    In general, these things tend to happen in poorer communties. In general, speed bumps do not go to poorer communities. I would suspect that the two, while not directly related, would show some kind of relationship.
    Every time I look at a Yankees hat I see a swastika tilted just a little off kilter.
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  13. #13
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Achernar
    If that were true, wouldn't it apply to other injuries as well? The study says, "The children who had been struck by cars were less likely to live within one block of a speed bump than those of the same age and sex treated on the same day." Therefore the children who had fallen out of trees, gotten shot, eaten rat poison, and everything else, were more likely to live within one block of a speed bump.
    And if we had the stats on those other injuries, I would bet that the majority of things these other kids were treated for was a lot less serious than "being injured or killed by a moving vehicle". Needing a few stitches or a cast on a broken arm is a far cry from the kinds of permanently disfiguring and crippling injuries you frequently see when a pedestrian is hit by a moving vehicle, assuming they survive it. Additionally, I was tossing that out there as one possible confounding factor -- I don't pretend to know the full answer, I am merely questioning the validity of the study's methodology, which seems somewhat shaky.
    Last edited by Michele Zone; 19 Nov 2004 at 9:31 PM.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian boilerplater's avatar
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    I'm still a big advocate of traffic calming measures. I never learned how to design studies such as this but I can see the point that it may be flawed. My neighborhood had a study done for traffic calming after many months of lobbying. The state DOT has a grant program for it. $50K later, they determined that our traffic volume did not warrant traffic clalming. All along our position was that we were not worried about volume, but the occasional speed demon doing 40-50 on the 25 mph streets. There has only been 1 incident of a kid getting hit in the 8 years I've been here, but several people have had pet cats killed, including myself. Yeah, I really liked that cat, so it pisses me off! Another annoying thing is that some traffic calming could have been done for a fraction of the cost of the study.
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  15. #15
    Cyburbian Breed's avatar
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    We were probably jumping on you a bit much about the validity of the stats used... I'm sure mst of us are in favor of some type of traffic calming in largely residential areas... I think our beef is more with the way they are often implemented. Speed humps usually go in after the fact after a group of concerned citizens make an issue out of it (i.e. they go in affluent residential suburbs, not some of the poorer neighborhoods where they are more often needed.) It would be best to see this type of thing go in during the development phase. Require traffic circles in certain size developments and whatnot.
    Every time I look at a Yankees hat I see a swastika tilted just a little off kilter.
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  16. #16
    Cyburbian
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    I'm not a big fan of speed bumps - heard that some of them are getting ripped out because of the ADA now on account of people with injuries that are worsened by a sudden impact. And the thought of someone being in an ambulance that has to go over them brings tears to my eyes. To me they always seemed like the lazy way to calm traffic - well, we could narrow the road, or chicane, or something else that would improve the street - or we can drop a small wall in the road to batter cars into going slower than the comfort level of the road.

  17. #17
    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
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    ^-- Yeah. But those ways are more expensive.

    Speed bumps as traffic calming come from the same school of thought that believes that stop signs every ten feet is traffic calming. Which is to say, the aldermen-trying-to-appease-irate-voters-on-a-budget-by-doing-a-half-assed-job school of thought.

  18. #18
    Cyburbian Michele Zone's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by boilerplater
    I'm still a big advocate of traffic calming measures. I never learned how to design studies such as this but I can see the point that it may be flawed.
    I never said I was against traffic calming measures. I am against one-dimensional "magic bullet" solutions, especially those based on a flawed study. Partly, I was agreeing with silentvoice that THINGS do not, by themselves, make kids safe. Partly, I was suggesting an argument to arm the professional planners who are concerned that this will be "thrown in their face" by citizens demanding speed bumps willy-nilly all over the place and using this one study as justification for their demands. I am all too familiar with the fact that people routinely latch onto a quick fix -- "and don't confuse me with the facts, my mind is made up!" I like studies but you have to be careful what conclusions you draw from them. Most people tend to read in what they want to hear.

  19. #19

    Maybe off topic

    This may be off topic but I think it fits. In driving heavy trucks in residential settings, the rule of thumb is no faster than you can stop the beast in it's own length. I do realize that this is not universally used by those concrete coyboy's who think that the bigger truck gives them the right to drive as they choose. However, the use of trafic calming devises, the only ones which I am familiar with are roundabouts and speed bumps, will work if they are used not ignored at the expense of one's vehicle. And they do NOT slow response or reasonable speeds, just the racers.

  20. #20
    Super Moderator luckless pedestrian's avatar
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    I am reviving this thread form a search -

    my Town Council tomorrow night is discussing putting speed bumps on this residential street that is used as a cut-through in the town to the dump and to the YMCA (in that order for me on Saturday mornings! ) - the bump would be removed in the winter for plowing...

    I have a philosophical problem with limiting public access on public roads with this method and besides, I find if you drive really fast over them, you don't feel them as much!

    so I revived this thread to see if there's a better reason than my less data-oriented ones above

    I am curious about the extension of response times and the ADA comment above - does anyone have more info on this or have other reasons?

  21. #21
    Cyburbian btrage's avatar
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    Speed humps, as opposed to bumps, are a nice half-way measure. I don't think they are needed everywhere, but in cases where residential streets are being used as short-cuts, I can understand putting them in.

    I live on a street with speed humps, and it amazes me how fast people go over them. Maybe you're right that if you go fast, you won't feel them. But I swear to god I'm waiting for the day when some maniac goes over a speed hump at 50 mph and loses a few tires.
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  22. #22
         
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    Quote Originally posted by jordanb
    ^-- Yeah. But those ways are more expensive.

    Speed bumps as traffic calming come from the same school of thought that believes that stop signs every ten feet is traffic calming. Which is to say, the aldermen-trying-to-appease-irate-voters-on-a-budget-by-doing-a-half-assed-job school of thought.
    Oh you are oh so right (for once, haha, jk). Speedhumps often lead to that erratic swerve-to-the-side-where-to-speedhump-is-smaller driving that's more dangerous. maybe if you put in one park for the kids to play in they won't be forced to play in thier yards and chase balls into the street. Or maybe some T-intersections so people have to SLOW DOWN TO TURN

  23. #23
    Cyburbian Jeff's avatar
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    Speed bumps are a plague....

    Probably the worst "traffic calming" device ever invented. I wonder if that study took into account the fact that the kids were safer because the local residents were simply more aware of their presence b/c they petitioned for the speed bumps.

    A heavily landscaped street, or some brick pavers at the crosswalk works wonders for traffic calming.

  24. #24
    Cyburbian jmello's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Jeff
    Speed bumps are a plague...
    Speed bumps are different from speed humps. I have never seen a speed bump on a public street.

  25. #25
    Cyburbian Luca's avatar
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    I am struck by the dogmatic response to this thread by a lot of respondents. At some point in the not-to-distant-past, it would appear, speed bumps have become a BAD THING and all smug bien pensants are, naturally, against them.

    I can see that speed bumps have drawbacks. I can also see from direct observation that they have benefits. I would favour a more positive approach to road safety (speed three times and you’re license is suspended fir 2 years) than passive ones that harm everyone, but the world is not a perfect place. The cops can’t be everywhere and people WILL drive down a leafy yield-road at terrifying speed and cobbled surface won’t slow them a damn bit, especially if they’re driving a vehicle with soft suspension.

    Rather than reflexively discount evidence that does not fit your prejudice, take it into account.
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