The sign says “slow down”

Published 10:05 am Tuesday, March 13, 2018

We’ve all done it, pushed down on the accelerator a little too much, resulting in driving our vehicle at a speed much higher than the legal limit. Then a roadside speed sign is spotted, blinking rapidly because you are traveling a much faster speed than is posted. These speed signs can act as a great, neutral component and local resource for rural traffic enforcement.

Living among the winding country roads of Bell County and Appalachia as a whole invites the desire to cruise down a road, possibly going 10, 15 or more miles over the limit. Sometimes people are simply unaware of how fast they are actually going. There is no denying however, that country roads and speeding can and often are treacherous — with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reporting that in 2016, Kentucky saw 834 deaths due to traffic collisions — so any tool that can reduce these wrecks in any capacity is a positive thing. Not only are they benefit for securing safer roads, but they are an economical resource for any city to take advantage of.

During the Pineville City Council meeting Monday, a discussion was held to discuss their desire to purchase radar speed signs to hopefully deter the problems officers face with speeders coming through town on U.S. 25E. The particular speed signs, called EVOLIS, are from a company called ElanCity which produces portable signs that are pole-mounted, lightweight, durable and and can detect a vehicle from 1,000 feet away. The technology is state of the art, with traffic data collection capability and programmable message display. An article published on wired.com examines an experiment with speed signs around a school and concluded that the signs do indeed work to correct driver behavior.