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Traffic Calming

Learn how traffic calming is used to reduce speeding and encourage safe driving.

Traffic calming is how we encourage people to drive slower and follow traffic laws. We use education, enforcement and engineering to calm traffic.

Education teaches people ways they can ease traffic problems. This could include slowing down, or traveling by bus or bike. A safety campaign might include lawn signs and door hangers.

Enforcement is done by the Washington County Sheriff's Office or local police. Enforcement increases community awareness of speed limits and traffic laws. Traffic may issue tickets use a radar trailer to let drivers know how fast they are going.

Engineering changes the road to help reduce speeds, decrease traffic volume, and improve safety. The devices used may also have negative impacts. For example, a something that slows traffic, like a speed cushion may also slow emergency vehicle response time. The pros and cons must be considered.

Not all devices are appropriate for all streets. Speed cushions can be used on local routes, but not collectors, for example.

Least restrictive solutions

  • Speak at a community meeting, such as the Community Participation Organization or homeowners association
  • Start a safety campaign, such as lawn signs and door hangers
  • Form of a Neighborhood Watch
  • Report a traffic complaint

More restrictive solutions

  • Install street markings or warning signs
  • Form a no-parking zone

Most restrictive solutions

  • Restrict turns
  • Create one-way streets
  • Improve sidewalks
  • Install speed cushions (speed bumps)

Some County roads are eligible for traffic calming programs through the Neighborhood Streets Program.