Aiken neighbors say new speed bumps too tall

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News 12 First at Five, Dec. 6, 2007

AIKEN, S.C. -- Your drive in one part of Aiken is bumpier than usual this week. And it may even cause some damage to your car. News 12's Gene Petriello investigated and is on your side with a speed bump controversy.

Jack Schwarz drives through the intersection of Two Notch Road and Marlboro Street in Aiken everyday. And that ride is now a whole lot bumpier--the city added 3 speed bumps earlier this week.

"I think they're a little severe," he told News 12. "They are just a little too steep. A little too high."

But those who live here say these bumps are needed.

"Every person in this community got involved because putting police here would not stop them," says Robert White.

"If you sat here with a car, and without the bumps, in less than a hour, you'd see 50 people run through," says White.

"Our concern is to slow them down. All we ask is for them to stop here and stop here," says White.

News 12 decided to test the speed bumps and see what would happen when we went over them with our PT Cruiser. We drove over the bump at 5 miles per hour and the bump scraped the bottom of the Cruiser. The speed limit was 15.

"Now, if the speed bumps should be modified is another issue," says White.

Demetrius Kitchings thinks these bumps are a good idea, "But they're a little too high. And me, I have a low rider on my car so I scrap the bottom of it and it's messing up my car."

Another driver agrees that it's bumpy but good for safety. "People come flying through here and there's a stop sign and most people run the stop sign," says Mary Leaphart.

Jack wants to see more speed humps, like the one up the road from the new speed bumps. He says they are lower and easier to ride over.

"They ought to just put the speed bumps across half the road because I'm not supposed to be stopping before I cross the speed bump on this side," says Jack.

Another problem is the South Carolina Driving Book says you have to stop at the line, not at the sign. And the stop line is beyond the speed bump and the stop sign.

Aiken Public Works Director Larry Morris says his department will grind the tops of the speed bumps. That way cars can go over them without scraping. He admits, the speed bumps as they are right now are probably a little too high. No word yet on when the grinding will happen.

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