Aiken neighbors say new speed bumps too tall

By: Gene Petriello Email
By: Gene Petriello Email

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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  • by Rhett Riviere Location: Aiken on Dec 7, 2007 at 11:31 AM
    Apparently you were called by complainers regarding the new speed bumps. Those of us who live directly around them and are forced to traverse them multiple times a day are willing to put up with this 'inconvenience'… an inconvenience caused by those reckless drivers who absolutely refuse to stop at a stop sign or when there is a horse in the intersection… if that is what is necessary to make the intersection safe. These complainants use this road and intersection as a means of bypassing traffic on the three primary (paved) roads and have little regard for the purpose of the dirt roads (horses and the race track) and even less purpose of their own for being there at all. If the neighbors and equestriens of the area had called WRDW and complained about the more than 100 daily documented cases of cars accelerating through this intersection without stopping, would WRDW have been "on their side"? This is the horse district, not just any intersection, as the dirt roads should point out. Virtually ANY accident involving a horse and a vehicle will be serious. Additionally, both properties that are in front of the two stop signs have had numerous vehicles go through their fences and into the property from people failing to stop at the signs. As of right now, while people are complaining about these speed bumps, those same people are still not stopping, but rolling through. If nothing else, the bumps have forced people to go slowly through the intersection… especially the center bump. By the way, 5 miles an hour through a fifty foot 's' curve 4 way stop intersection is reasonable. If you hit 15 miles an hour there you are one of the ones who runs the sign! We are serious about protecting our horses and riders.
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