Speed Table vs. Speed Hump: Which One is Better?

Out of many traffic calming measures, vertical deflection ones are some of the most commonly used for speed control. These include speed humps and speed tables (also called table humps).

These are commonly found on roadways to calm traffic and are often compared. Many believe they’re the same, but they have several differences.

Both are calming techniques that give a jolt to the oncoming traffic.

However, these undulations are different when one looks at their features, such as their top surfaces, lengths and widths. While both can bring a low traffic speed, the speed reduction rate differs.

Overall, every transportation department has to consider which is the best for the roadway in question.

A black and yellow speed table, and a black rubber speed hump with yellow reflective films.

We also have an article discussing the pros and cons of traffic-calming humps.

What is the difference between a speed table and a speed hump?

Speed humps and speed tables are bumps on the road.

They’re used as an alternative for the police enforcement of speed limits.

However, because these road bumps achieve different results, a traffic engineer will not use them interchangeably. This is a fact that applies to all types of traffic calming measures.

Other factors are also involved, such as the space in question.

The following are the basic details of these speed breakers:

A black and yellow speed hump and speed table as traffic-calming measures to reduce speed.

What is a Speed Table

A speed table is a basic solution for achieving a speed reduction. A speed table is a speed breaker that causes vehicular traffic to slow down.

Its job is to warn the motorists who originally intended to speed through traffic.

The speed table can be successfully used to discourage speeding, as it can cause discomfort to the driver and the motor vehicle owners if they go over too fast.

Speed tables can be found on public roads, especially at pedestrian crossings.

They favour emergency vehicles very well, as they are easier to go over due to their lower heights.

They’re uncommon on private roads, and private property owners don’t use them on their driveways like the speed bump. It can be made from several different materials.

The traditional one is the asphalt type, but the rubber speed table is the most efficient and economical one.

Today, the bestsellers are made from rubber, often recycled. They have more pros, such as lowered noise levels and induced wear and tear on vehicles.

A Speed Table Sign must be installed before each speed table to warn motorists.

A yellow and black speed table is placed on the ground

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      What is a Speed hump

      A road hump maintains slow traffic flow on city streets and public roads.

      It causes more congestion than the speed table and lowers traffic volume.

      The speed hump is also often used on emergency-response routes, like the speed table. This is because it lets emergency vehicles such as ambulances and fire trucks go over without disturbing their response time.

      But at the same time, it enforces pedestrian safety.

      This raised section is often used in series, evenly spaced to create a slow zone such as a work zone, a school zone, or just a pedestrian zone.

      Overall, it is one of the most effective traffic control devices to prevent crashes or reduce their severity to prevent fatalities.

      Apart from being friendly to the local ambulance, it is also suitable to serve other heavy traffic, such as buses.

      Black and yellow speed humps made of rubber used on roads for traffic management

      Speed bumps vs speed tables

      People choose traffic engineering measures to achieve optimal traffic safety.

      They should know about these devices’ facts and traffic data to do this effectively.

      They both have achieved speed reductions of up to 40%. Both speed breakers can also significantly reduce the number of collisions and fatalities.

      The following are some important points that one should know to make their roads less unsafe:

      A black and yellow speed bump and speed table as traffic-calming measures.

      How fast should one go over them?

      Speed breakers are known for achieving a slow traffic speed.

      Speed tables don’t reduce speed too much, allowing motorists to go over them even at 45 miles per hour.

      In comparison, speed humps will allow a motorist to go up to 20 mph, which is the minimal requirement of a speed table.

      Due to these figures, both can be used for pedestrians at crossings and to control city traffic.

      Black and yellow speed tables, and a black rubber speed hump with yellow reflective films to reduce speed.

      What is the required ground clearance?

      Ground clearance is an important factor, as having a low car can damage the underside while going over vertical deflections.

      In the case of these undulations, one should at least have 5 inches (approx. 130mm) of ground clearance.

      These values differ based on the required heights by country.

      Their disadvantages

      Speed humps have been known to cause structural damage to vehicles over the years. They have a greater history of doing this because they’re built on public roads and deal with more traffic than speed bumps.

      Because of this, speed humps are also known for causing delays in the response time of emergency vehicles.

      A speed table also has several disadvantages, but they’re in limited proportions due to their smaller heights.

      They can also damage a car’s underside in the long term. However, many still prefer them as they don’t reduce the response time much.

      Noise pollution is a phenomenon often associated with all speed breakers. The older asphalt and concrete undulations produce more noise on impact, disturbing the neighbourhood.

      However, it is important to know that most of the disadvantages of these raised sections have been eliminated recently via their rubber counterparts.

      Are rubber speed tables effective?

      A speed table is a modified version of the speed hump. It has a flatter top surface and is even longer.

      A speed table is very effective as it reduces traffic and congestion while protecting emergency vehicles’ response time more than the speed hump.

      An emergency vehicle is about to pass over black and yellow speed tables.

      Are speed humps and speed tables bigger than speed bumps?

      Yes. The reason that different vertical raised sections give out different results is in due part to their dimensions.

      While both can be area-wide, the major difference is that most speed humps and speed tables have a flatter top surface.

      Their width is also bigger as a result compared to a speed bump.

      Speed bumps are known to have a greater average height, and they also have more rounded tops.

      They can have a length of a maximum average of 1,830mm. For taller speed bumps, it is recommended to have around 7 inches (approx. 180mm) of clearance.

      These dimensional differences are responsible for the respective dynamic speed controls they can both achieve.

      A black and yellow speed hump, speed table, and a speed bump as traffic-calming measures to reduce speed.


      The speed hump and the speed table are two important traffic calming devices that can significantly improve an area’s livability and road traffic safety.

      Both have similar sets of uses and are used according to the amount of speed reduction needed.

      Either way, one can expect to see improvements in the traffic conditions, should one or the other be used properly.

      It is hard to say which is best between the speed hump and the speed table.

      They can perform well in different situations. So choosing the appropriate traffic calming device according to your situation is quite important.



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