What is traffic calming?
Traffic calming is something, encouraged to slow down the traffic at desired sections of roads, which ensures safer roads (whether highways or residential) for users including pedestrians.
Road markings, speed breakers, speed table, lane narrowing, traffic circles or roundabout, dedicated lanes, speed signs, variable message sign (VMS) etc. are typical examples of traffic calming measures.
What are traffic calming measures?
Broadly traffic calming measures are a combination of Engineering, Education & Enforcement (EEE) & if applied effectively can deliver desired results, let’s discuss:
Engineering measures are making physical changes to the road layout of an existing road or integrate during the design phase, which influence traffic behaviour.
- provision of suitably designed speed breakers for intended speed
- lane narrowing or reducing lane numbers at desired sections
- rumble strips are provided along the travel direction, cause vibration & audible rumbling which alerts the drivers of potential danger or reminds if they drift from their lane.
- provision of roundabouts – reduce delay, improve traffic flow
Educational measures consist of signages and road markings; they can be notifications painted on the road or signs installed or speed limit or warning of potential hazards painted on the road.
Some of the examples are shown in the following pictures:
Enforcement measures include regulating traffic control measure (law), deployment of law enforcement agencies, installation of speed cameras, automated challan systems in case of traffic violation etc.
Benefits of Traffic Calming Measures
If these measures are applied pro-actively & effectively then improved road safety program can be achieved.
- Reduce speeding
- Improve speed limit compliance
- improve injury severity & lower fatality rates