Speed bumps could become a thing of he past if a controversial government plan gets the green light.
Environment Secretary Michael Gove has said local authorities should consider “improving road layouts and junctions to optimise traffic flow, for example by considering removal of road humps.”
Speed bumps are said to double emissions by causing vehicles to repeatedly slow down and speed up.
Ministers say they want councils to use other methods, such as changing road layouts, however the proposal has divided opinion.
However, road safety representatives stress their importance in keeping people safe and insist they have saved lives for decades.
Gove’s idea was backed by Howard Cox, of pressure group FairFuel UK, who said their supporters would be “thrilled” speed bumps and pinch points could be a thing of the past for drivers.
Although he aid town halls would not be held accountable for their costly installation and the congestion they’ve caused, increasing local emissions.
A spokesperson for South Tyneside Council said there is no ‘one size fits all’ approach to road safety.
“Traffic calming measures in one place might not be suitable in another,” said the spokesperson. “Overall, road safety schemes are only implemented where they are needed, often at the request of residents.”
The AA stated that to dig up road bumps would be expensive, and questioned whether it was a good way to spend money.
And head of road safety at the Royal Society of the Prevention of Accidents Kevin Clinton said the removal of speed bumps would actually create more of a risk to road users. He believes the road feature was actually a proven way to reduce casualties and a main reason why deaths and injuries have decreased in the last few decades.
A £255 million fund is expected to be given to councils to retrofit buses, reprogramme traffic lights and change road layouts and speed bumps.
If these methods prove unsuccessful, councils could be given powers to slap new local taxes on the most polluting vehicles as soon as 2020.