Councils across the UK could be encouraged to phase out speed bumps and other traffic-calming measures as part of a new Government plan to cut air pollution.
According to a report in the Telegraph on Sunday (9 April), the Government has been forced to reconsider its proposals for improving air quality after the High Court ruled that its existing strategy did not meet legal requirements.
Ministers have come up with a raft of new ideas including advice to local councils on how to keep traffic flowing steadily, rather than stop-start driving which increases fuel consumption and harmful emissions.
One area to be targeted is speed bumps, with councils set to be encouraged to replace them with other options including road cushions.
According to the Telegraph, speed bumps force drivers to slow right down to avoid damaging their vehicle, whereas cushions, which are normally placed in groups of two or three across the road and have a shallower slope, require less deceleration.
The news report points to research by Imperial College London which suggests that driving over speed bumps in a diesel car produces 98% more nitrogen dioxide than driving over road cushions.
Other options likely to be put forward include better sequencing of traffic lights to ensure that drivers arrive at green lights rather than red ones if they drive within the speed limit.
The DfT and the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) will present the new plan to the High Court on 24 April.