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Old 30th January 2007, 11:44   #1
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Default Road humps - A substitute for traffic law enforcement?

I searched the forum for road humps and could not find a thread specific to this topic, though there were threads on ground clearance.
How often have we winced after crossing a speed breaker? Issues like safety, discomfort to the driver and damage to the vehicle are given least regard while constructing one.
What can we do about this? Whom to complain? Are there better alternatives? Can RTI act come to our rescue?
Rules

IRC:99-1988 - Tentative Guidelines on the Provision of Speed Breakers for Control of Vehicular Speeds on Minor Roads stipulates that a road hump should conform to the following dimensions: Height of 12.5 Cms, width of 200 cms and radius of 4 M.

Hump should be stripped in white, well maintained and warning signs for speed breakers should be provided at a prescribed distance. Speed breakers should be constructed with hot pre-mix bituminous material, well compacted after laying on well prepared surface.

Rationale

Roads are designed for specific speeds at which vehicles can travel with comfort and safety. However, at certain locations such as approaches to manned and unmanned level crossings, sharp curves, congested or accident-prone locations, and residential streets, additional control of speed may be necessary to ensure safety. This is achieved through several ways such as posting mandatory speed limit signs, use of flashing beacons to alert drivers, and road markings. In certain situations, road humps are required, but they are meant only for residential areas and minor roads. Their use on major roads is not considered good engineering practice and the IRC guideline explicitly discourages it.

The IRC guidelines stipulate that there should be no damage to vehicles or excessive discomfort to drivers/passengers when crossing the speed breaker at the designated speed; the driver should suffer a higher level of discomfort when he goes over the speed breaker above the speed stipulated by the authorities; and the driver should not lose directional control of the vehicle when crossing the speed breaker. It has been empirically determined that to meet these requirements, the speed breaker must have a width larger than the wheelbase of the vehicles. The IRC guidelines also stipulate where road humps should be placed and it is clearly stated that when a minor road crosses a major road, the speed breaker should be on the minor road about 10 meters from the intersection.

Failed alternative
Karnataka State Government Order dated April 5, 1997, sought to replace all road humps on Public Works Department (PWD) roads with rumbler strips (a group of 15 to 20 small humps, each 20 cm wide and 2 cm high and separated from each other by 15 cm) of uniform design. This was perceived to be misguided as the stipulated crossing speeds for vehicles plying over the rumbler strips is very low and a majority of two-wheeler drivers tend to lose control over the vehicle causing accidents.
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Old 30th January 2007, 13:43   #2
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Many times these speed bumps are 'unauthorised' in the sense that villagers get together to bribe / influence someone and get them constructed on either side of their village (probably following an accident or something).

These are the worst kind because they do not conform to standards and are very often un-marked.

Another observation I made while on a trip to Ooty via the Mysore - Ooty ghat road was, they have these 'half' speed bumps that extend mid-way into the road on the descending side. The idea is that descending vehicles are to slow down while ascending traffic is un-impeded. What actually happens is that drivers move into the right lane to avoid the bumps, creating a very dangerous situation.
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Old 30th January 2007, 14:41   #3
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The only thing that'll terrorize Indian motorists into discipline is a hard-balled military government - the only fine for traffic offense should be life imprisonment
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Old 30th January 2007, 15:57   #4
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I have never understood the concept of humps/speed breakers. If drivers are given proper training and are thoroughly tested before being issued licences then what is the need to have humps? I, personally take humps as an insult to my driving skills. I am intelligent enough to read well displayed speed limit signs and am mature enough to understand the risks of driving speedily around curves, through unmanned/manned level crossings and through residential areas and school zones. The day humps disappear from Indian roads we will truly be matured road users and drivers. Sadly, I don’t think that’s going to happen in our lifetime. Nowadays, people demand speed breakers from authorities in residential areas, school zones etc.

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at certain locations such as approaches to manned and unmanned level crossings, sharp curves, congested or accident-prone locations, and residential streets, additional control of speed may be necessary to ensure safety.
Don’t western countries have curves, manned/unmanned level crossings, residential and school zones? How come they don’t feel the need for “additional control of speed to ensure safety”? Our laws are outdated. The authorities need to concentrate on real issues and need to properly understand the problem rather then churning out “kaam chalau” solutions.

Last edited by amit : 30th January 2007 at 15:59.
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Old 30th January 2007, 17:00   #5
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I disagree....Road bumps or speedbreakers (as popularly known) are certainly effective, but best when they are clearly marked. Unmarked speedbreakers dont serve the purpose and only damage the car.

There ought to be strict regulation on where speed-breakers are used and how their visibility is improved.
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Old 30th January 2007, 17:05   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theMAG View Post
The only thing that'll terrorize Indian motorists into discipline is a hard-balled military government - the only fine for traffic offense should be life imprisonment
Break a signal and your in for life....... I tihnk there would be hardly anyone left on the road after a couple of months....

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I disagree....Road bumps or speedbreakers (as popularly known) are certainly effective, but best when they are clearly marked. Unmarked speedbreakers dont serve the purpose and only damage the car.

There ought to be strict regulation on where speed-breakers are used and how their visibility is improved.
yea....i gotta admit i break the speed limit quite often nd the speedbreakers really do a great job slowing me down....i kinda know where some of the speedbreakers in mumbai are but for someone whos not familiar with the roads....suddenly finding a speedbreaker in the middle of the road could be pretty dangerous....

Last edited by khanak : 30th January 2007 at 17:08.
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Old 31st January 2009, 11:34   #7
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Default Discipline in Madras

Recently I was in Madras and found that STOP lines are clearly observed.

I was pleasantly surprised to see that taxi drivers STOP the car in red signal even in the middle of the night (hidden cameras).

Regarding speedbreakers, is there a way that Team-BHP can force a standard approach with regard to the construction and display of speedbrakers throughout the country ?

I have a Civic and I know the pain

Raja
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Old 2nd February 2009, 16:09   #8
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On my trip to Hampi during the Republic Day weekend, I suffered a belt snap resulting in unnecessary expenditure and my entire holiday plans being spoilt because of one such ugly evil unmarked speed breaker hidden by a temple shade. These kind of speed breaker can wreck havoc on any car save the Jeeps.

Someone needs to help implement uniform policy on these so that our cars can be saved
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Old 2nd February 2009, 16:27   #9
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Another well known axle-chassis-breaker (currently tamed, though) was opposite BIMAL showroom on the ITPL Road, in Mahadevapura, Bangalore.

On the day it was "constructed" I had the misfortune of going over it, with a fully loaded City. Had to make all the passengers get down, and even then the under-chassis scraped.

There are more such mountains on the way to KRS from Mysore.

Clearly, in my opinion, Team-BHP has to muster its collective wisdom and impress upon, both the standard-making bodies and those who execute at the ground level.

Authorities must remove (or, atleast 'tame') those mountains that masquerade as speed-breakers.

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On my trip to Hampi during the Republic Day weekend, I suffered a belt snap resulting in unnecessary expenditure and my entire holiday plans being spoilt because of one such ugly evil unmarked speed breaker hidden by a temple shade. These kind of speed breaker can wreck havoc on any car save the Jeeps.

Someone needs to help implement uniform policy on these so that our cars can be saved
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Old 2nd February 2009, 18:13   #10
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I saw the thread title, and assumed you would be based in Bangalore. Bingo! I was right!

Bangalore is turning into the city of unmarked speedbreakers. They spring up anytime, and in all possible weird shapes and heights. You see cars scrape their underbelly and owners wring out their hearts in frustration, while the people responsible for the mayhem stand alongside the road watching the fun. Seeing the way these are constructed, it leaves no doubt that this is a case of the 'have-nots' watch the 'haves' groan in pain.

A road i usually traverse through was infamous for having 24 speedbreakers over a stretch of 6 kms. This morning while doing the same route after a 2 day gap, i notice there are 6 more newly added, and 3 among these are H U G E!! I have resolved i wouldnt use this road henceforth.

In some cases sense prevails and after a certain threshold number of cars are wrecked, someone applies a mini patch by lowering the angle of ascent as well as descent, providing some solace to hapless car owners.

Things are getting so bad by the day, that i feel the need to set up an AXE brigade to axe down these monsters.

God help us!
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Old 2nd February 2009, 18:33   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I disagree....Road bumps or speedbreakers (as popularly known) are certainly effective, but best when they are clearly marked. Unmarked speedbreakers dont serve the purpose and only damage the car.

There ought to be strict regulation on where speed-breakers are used and how their visibility is improved.
Speed breakers may be effective, but globally they are more of a bane than a boon. In UK car owners keep groaning how these speed breakers spoil suspensions and result in improper tyre wear. There have been cases where in car owners have succesfully claimed compensation for car damage from the local councils . A better bet to control erring drivers is hidden speed and safety cameras.

May be we should have them here as well.
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Old 2nd February 2009, 20:03   #12
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here in cincinnati i went into an apartment community. a mild looking speed breaker spanned across probably 5 feet. the posted speed limit was 10 mph. i must have been doing 20. it was deceptive! It gently lifted my car and dumped it back with underbody scraping hard on the asphalt.

back in india we had 24 ramblers-cum-speed breaker in a span of 50 meters in front of my college. A hostel-resident student had died in an accident and authorities decided to subside the anger with creating those.

unless enforced with proper guidelines, they do not serve the purpose they are meant for.
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Old 2nd February 2009, 20:17   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benbsb29 View Post
I saw the thread title, and assumed you would be based in Bangalore. Bingo! I was right!...
Hahaa... where else!

Quote:
Originally Posted by amit View Post
...Don’t western countries have curves, manned/unmanned level crossings, residential and school zones? How come they don’t feel the need for “additional control of speed to ensure safety”? Our laws are outdated. The authorities need to concentrate on real issues and need to properly understand the problem rather then churning out “kaam chalau” solutions.
I am yet to see a road hump here in Singapore, well, there are humps inside the society and few pedestrian crossing are elevated humps. And where ever they are, they are very well marked by road signs and lamps posts.

But then, back in India, I feel that humps are the only way that the officials can regulate some of our Street Hawks and Night Riders! But then, they should be well marked and as per specifications, unlike those bone breakers that we have!
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Old 7th April 2009, 11:47   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ravradha View Post
Rules

IRC:99-1988 - Tentative Guidelines on the Provision of Speed Breakers for Control of Vehicular Speeds on Minor Roads stipulates that a road hump should conform to the following dimensions: Height of 12.5 Cms, width of 200 cms and radius of 4 M.

Hump should be stripped in white, well maintained and warning signs for speed breakers should be provided at a prescribed distance. Speed breakers should be constructed with hot pre-mix bituminous material, well compacted after laying on well prepared surface.
Is there any way to enforce this. Can the Road Tax payers demand the government to make proper speed breakers instead of "Spine & Car breakers"

-arun
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Old 7th April 2009, 12:45   #15
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The legal speedbreakers are usually marked, and often painted.
The illegal ones are scary on fast roads, and sometimes necessary of minor roads. The problems are multifold - partly to do with irresponsible drivers, and in other cases because of poor road design.
I do not think they're all useless - but we can talk to whoever got them built to get them painted, for sure.
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