Road Access for Disabled Americans

no speed bump sign

Access Issue

new item graphic = new, less new item graphic = less new, least new item graphic = least new

Letters from disabled people and their advocates

Quick notes

Government agencies responsible for Road Access under the ADA

Every person who has experienced speed humps as barriers to access or deterrents to travel should contact the following agencies and explain how speed humps have resulted in the denial of meaningful access. The links below will take you to RADA pages which describe the relationship of the agency to roadway access, provide contact information, and link to the agency's webpages.

  1. The US Access Board (responsible for defining access guidelines)
  2. The Department of Justice (responsible for ADA enforcement)
  3. The Department of Transportation (responsible for "traffic management" compliance)

Contact your federal, state and local officials, too.

equipment digging up hump asphalt during removal process

Speed hump news stories


People and organizations opposing dangerous traffic management experiments are located around the world. The organizations listed below are concerned about access for fragile, elderly and disabled individuals and will welcome your participation.

Warning sign: anti-car environmentalist ahead

For even more information about traffic issues, visit the following sites.

What you need to know about technology

new item graphicThe impact is cumulative

new item graphic Humps don't bother you? What do your films look like?

x-ray film showing lots of rods
Some people don't seem to comprehend what we mean by deformity and disability. In order to educate people who have never been exposed to such problems, here's the first of our volunteers who have agreed to reveal their innermost secrets.

The x-ray film, illustrated here, shows a spine from pelvis to skull. The bright lines and blobs are the steel rods, connectors and screws used for stabilization after fusion surgery. (This is not your average back and not your average operation!) On a daily basis, the "owner" of this spine utilizes pain management protocols not available over-the-counter, and, detours great distances to avoid "low profile" speed humps. (Able-bodied engineers call them "kinder, gentler humps". We think that is an oxymoron and continue to call them "torture devices".)

Interestingly, you don't have to be disabled before going over road humps. Go over the wrong hump, in the wrong vehicle, and you, too, can "join the club" - as documented in the article from a British medical journal described in the following section.

new item graphicTwo cases of injury to passengers seated on public transport buses

"Road humps: accident prevention or hazard?", Journal of Accident & Emergency Medicine, July 1996, David Bowrey, Rhys Thomas, Rubert Evans, Peter Richmond

Case 1 test dummy which should have been used to test devices
"A 49 year old female travelling on a double decker public transport bus was jolted upwards as the vehicle traversed a road hump and on landing back in her seat she experienced acute low back pain. Radiographs confirmed a crush fracture of her third lumbar vertebra (L3). Treatment comprised bed rest, analgesia, and a plaster jacket. One year after the injury she presented with further low back pain and paraesthesiae in both lower limbs. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) showed a posterior and right sided disc herniation at the level L2/3 causing root compression. She underwent laminectomy and discectomy without undue complication.
Two years after the injury she continues to suffer from low back pain, and has been unable to return to her former employment."

Case 2
"A 34 year old female sitting on the back seat of the lower tier of a double decker public transport bus sustained a flexion/extension injury to her neck, and a soft tissue injury to her right shoulder after the vehicle traversed a road hump. She was thrown forwards striking the back of the seat in front of her. She had no prior history of either shoulder or neck problems. Treatment comprised a soft cervical collar and analgesia. Fifteen months after the injury she continues to suffer from intermittent neck pain."

Look what tomorrow might bring to your street

If you are disabled and have a sense of complacency because you don't have to go over humps to get around, consider adding the word "yet" to that thought. And, if you think going over a few humps every day wont be too bad, consider what has happened in elsewhere. After all, if two are good, twenty must be better, right?

"Voting" and "buying" tools of discrimination

Other means of "traffic calming" can also be illegal

new item graphicFLYER

Here's a ready-to-print flyer with a summary of the problems caused by speed humps. Thanks to yet another American willing to advocate for the rights of persons with disability.

new item graphicBut, seriously, folks - laughing as we crumble with pain...

An ad hoc RADA review committee found Anthony Magliari's sense of humor a welcome antidote to the misery of speed humps. Tony tells us the photo was taken "probably somewhere somewhere near Tampa in Feb. 1999". He wishes us good luck.

Fire & EMS | Engineering

© Rada Project, 1998
July 4, 1998 / last update: September 15, 2000 (Version 1.v)