A comprehensive guide for speed cushions

A wide variety of traffic calming strategies are implemented in different countries to promote attentive driving and safe habits among users of roads. They are intended to manage traffic volume, reduce the miles per hour (mph) speed of vehicles, and promote pedestrian safety as well as traffic safety.

Many traffic calming devices in Europe are used on a roadway, traffic intersection, crosswalk, pedestrian crossing, roundabout, work zone, and asphalt driveway. Common examples of tools used for traffic calming measures for schools and other areas include speed cushions, speed bumps, speed humps, road ramps, rumble stripes, road signs, and traffic cones.

All the speed cushions and traffic calming measures go hand in hand. If you are curious about why use traffic calming measures for your roads and what is a speed cushion, then keep reading the article to find everything about speed cushions.


Benefits of using speed cushions

The main role of speed cushions is to impose speed limits and slow down speeding vehicles travelling on traffic lanes and roads. If you are curious to learn how do speed cushions work, read these speed cushions advantages to learn how they can calm traffic in a pedestrian zone and other areas.

  • Decrease speed of vehicles: Speed cushions have a raised surface and wheel cutouts. When a short-axle vehicle passes over them, it has to reduce its speed by around 20 miles per hour (mph) to move over the speed cushion without getting a jolt.
  • Reduce the number of deaths: These traffic-management and traffic control devices make a motor-vehicle decrease its speed in a slow zone, school zone and pedestrian zone. It helps maintain an appropriate distance between pedestrians and vehicles, resulting in fewer accidents.
  • Help emergency vehicles pass easily: Some traffic control tools like a speed bump, force emergency vehicles to reduce their speed a lot. However, speed cushions don’t do anything like that. So, an emergency vehicle can reach its destination on time.
  • Help motorists and cyclists pass easily: A bicyclist, cyclist, and motorist pass through the gap of a rubber speed cushion easily. This way, they are not forced to decrease their speed like cars.
  • No drainage hindrance: Unlike road bumps and some other traffic calming measures, speed cushions do not hinder the movement of rainwater on a sidewalk, crosswalk, pavement, or roadway. When you install a speed cushion in neighbourhoods, you do not experience any drainage issues.

Different forms of speed cushions

Speed cushions are generally divided into different forms based on their material type. They are installed by the federal highway administration, the department of transportation or the city council to manage traffic count and vehicular speed.

On the basis of material, speed cushions can be categorised into the following types.

  • Metal speed cushions
  • Plastic speed cushions
  • Rubber speed cushions
  • Concrete speed cushions

Metal and concrete are less flexible, sturdier materials compared to plastic and rubber. That is why they are preferably used on roads that experience high volume traffic. Plastic and rubber are sturdy yet flexible materials. They are equally beneficial and effective.


Speed cushions buyer’s guide

If you want to buy a speed cushion, you may find it difficult to buy one product out of many available on the internet. There are many types of speed cushions and speed cushions brands that can make decision making more difficult. If you have trouble selecting the right product for your roads, here are the key factors you need to consider when buying this tool.

  • Size of speed cushions: Speed cushions come in different sizes. You should select speed cushion dimensions that are according to the local standards, vehicle type, and road size.
  • Material: Different materials like plastic, rubber, concrete, and metal are used to make speed cushions. Each material gives speed cushions their unique characteristics. You should select material according to your speed-limit and traffic volume needs.
  • Manufacturers: There are many manufacturers of speed cushions in different countries. You should check the credibility and experience of these manufacturers before choosing any one from them.

Frequently asked questions about speed cushions

Here are the popular faq about speed cushions.

  • What is the difference between speed cushions and speed humps?

Speed humps are the long raised sections placed on the road perpendicular to the curb line. They are narrower than speed cushions and reduce vehicular speed up to 30 mph.

  • Are speed cushions beneficial?

Speed cushions are beneficial in many ways as they control traffic flow and speed. All the speed cushions and emergency vehicles work great together. It means that they do not slow down fire trucks, ambulances, and other emergency vehicles, which helps them save lives without any delays.

  • Why are speed cushions becoming popular over time?

These speed cushions in Europe and other parts of the world are becoming popular because of their effectiveness and usefulness. They are used with rumble strips, pavement markings, wheel stops, signs or signals, traffic barriers, warning signs, and road traffic signs to make roads safer and pedestrian-friendly.



A speed cushion is a raised section installed on the unsafe roads, roundabouts, traffic circles, and city streets by municipalities and transportation engineers to discourage the high speed of vehicles.

They are installed according to the traffic control plan of the area. You can use street signs, road markings, highway signs, and yield signs to make speed cushions more prominent and warn traffic of their presence in advance.

Speed cushions offer several benefits, including a reduction in fatalities, control of speed in pedestrian zones, and no hindrance to stormwater drainage. You should install this tool on your roads to reduce the number of accidents caused by the high speed of vehicles.


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