Speed Humps

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A "speed hump" is a raised area in the roadway pavement surface that extends across the travel way to slow travel speed. A "speed hump" is a gradual rise in the pavement surface and is used on public streets, unlike a "speed bump" which is an abrupt change in pavement height used on a private driveway or parking lot.

Speed hump dimensions vary from agency to agency, but they are typically 12 feet long and 2 ½ to 3 inches high. They are usually placed across the roadway in a group of two to four humps per block, separated by 300 to 500 feet. The humps are typically requested by residents as a means to slow traffic in residential neighborhoods or decrease the amount of "cut-through" traffic in the block. Speed humps may have positive effects by:

  1. Reducing traffic speeds in the immediate vicinity of the speed humps,
  2. Decreasing traffic volume, and
  3. Reducing accidents in some areas.

At the same time, however, speed humps may also have detrimental effects by:

  1. Diverting traffic to other neighborhood streets thereby moving the problem rather than solving it
  2. Increasing noise levels due to vehicle brakes, tires and engines,
  3. Increasing vehicle emissions due to deceleration and acceleration
  4. Increasing the response time of emergency vehicles
  5. Conflicting with school and transit bus operation
  6. Presenting a potential hazard to bicyclists and motorcyclists.

The City of Burbank has a Speed Hump Control Plan, which allows speed humps in many areas, but prohibits their installation on specific streets. Speed humps cannot be used on the following streets:

  1. Major arterial streets
  2. Streets serving emergency services (police or fire stations)
  3. Streets with transit routes.

For more information regarding speed hump installation criteria click here, or contact the Traffic Division at (818) 238-3915 from 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

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