Lawton_Some people like speed bumps - others hate them. Pretty soon, drivers in one west Lawton neighborhood could find them on their streets as the Lawton City Council and Traffic Commission are considering a proposal to put the so-called "speed tables" on Attebury Street in the Lee West Addition. Several neighbors there are asking for them because they say cars fly down the roadway well above the speed limit.
Norman already has installed more than 150 speed bumps in residential areas notorious for speeders. While they do slow down traffic, some say they also tear up cars. However, the proposed speed bumps aren't traditional. "Actual speed bumps are very jarring, and cause issues with suspension, and things like that," said Lawton City Council Member Randy Warren. Speed tables are different. "They are a slow ramp up, and then it's like a long table," said Warren. "It's long - or longer than - most vehicles, so all four tires will generally be up on top of the table at one time."
Warren says the speed tables are designed for 25-mile-per-hour traffic. "You don't want to stop traffic," he said. "You don't want to really bring it to a halt, but you want to make drivers aware they need to check their speed."
Some neighbors in the Lee West Addition say that they are welcoming the speed tables on their streets. "Usually they just come rushing down through here, and their music is loud and stuff, and right here it's more or less a dead end," said resident Randy Hayes. "They sometimes go off into the park because they're going so fast." Resident Bill Clarkson thinks it's a good idea, too. "I see no problem with them," he said. "It would probably be beneficial. It will make people aware when they go over it they need to slow down - I think it's a good idea."
However, in Norman, some driver say the bumps in the road are tearing up their cars. The bus system changed two routes to avoid them, and the fire department there says they're a nuisance when responding to emergencies. At this time, the council is considering the idea, but nothing is set in stone. "It's not something we're just going to come in one day and put on your street," said Warren. "The majority of people right there in that vicinity are going to have to desire that it be installed, or we're not going to go through the effort."
The Traffic Commission is still drafting the criteria for installing the bumps, and in Norman, residents have to sign a petition, and a street must see a certain amount of traffic before the speed tables are installed. Warren says Lawton is considering similar parameters.
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