Locals get the hump

FREMANTLE council has admitted it’s been a bit “over-zealous” with the traffic calming recently.

South Terrace resembled a slalom course this week as cars weaved around a dozen or so speed humps which were supposed to calm traffic but have mostly just aggravated drivers and added a new level of danger.

The audible cursing of drivers was matched by social media complaints, although there was a little support from people glad to see hoons slowed down.

“They are more of a danger than before, completely over the top,” Sheila Greenwood posted on the South Fremantle Precinct chat page.

“Hating the awkward speed bumps, how about a simple zebra crossing instead.”

• South Terrace speed humps are supposed to make the street safer, but weaving drivers have added to the danger. Photo by Charlie Smith

South Freo resident and local cafe owner Carlo Noto says the traffic calmers could also slow down shop tills.

“More and more people will start using Marine Terrace to miss out the speed humps, and this could drive down business,” Mr Noto told the Herald.

“It was bad before, but they’ve gone over the top.”

As the Chook interviewed Mr Noto, one grumpy customer couldn’t contain his anger any longer: “It’s bloody shithouse,” he spat into his brew.

Up the road, Vanilla Gifts owner Gabrielle Fitzgerald was a bit more philosophical, saying that while the humps weren’t the most effective measure, she’d been lobbying the council for three years to do something about traffic problems along the popular strip.

“There were three ambulances here for traffic incidents last year along, and we were told that it wasn’t a priority road,” Ms Fitzgerald said.

“When cars are flying past at 60kmh they’re not only putting pedestrians at risk, but they aren’t slowing down to see local businesses.”

Ms Fitzgerald says she and other businesses agree with Ms Greenwood and want a zebra crossing.

But it’s not only South Terrace that’s felt the heavy hand of the council’s traffic engineers, with Ord Street and Wray Avenue also copping a rubber overload.

The council said in a statement to the Herald it’s heard the complaints.

“Our ultimate aim with any traffic calming measures put in place is to improve community safety, but in this case we accept we’ve been a bit overzealous in recent works.

“After taking on board community feedback we’ve decided to remove several speed bumps from Ord Street and one from Wray Avenue. We’re also reviewing the South Terrace speed bumps and there may also be some changes there to make sure they have the desired effect.”

by STEVE GRANT and CHARLIE SMITH

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