Speed bumps are probably the most effective - but to the majority of users, the most annoying - way of traffic calming available in the market today. The reason being that it punishes ALL road users, whether abiding by the stringent speed limit in such areas or not. My idea will only have effect on road users that drive at speeds higher than recommended in such areas. Speed bumps are synonymous with stringent speed restrictions due to the areas of risk to other parties in the immediate vicinity, referring to parking areas, roads around schools, residential estates, etc. If, for example, the speed limit in such area is 30km/h, ALL users have to slow down to a crawl to cross the traffic calming device, REGARDLESS of the fact that they were abiding by the speed limit or not. What makes my idea novel is that it would only have an effect on vehicles that do NOT adhere to such speed limits. Not having any mechanical or any other maintenance requiring mechanism, makes it even more manufacturable and marketable. It could be a permanent installation OR a mobile unit, therefore my market is vast, where temporary traffic calming is required such as accident scenes,or around schools only during peak pedestrian times, or permanent calming requirements such as parking areas or where there is high pedestrian volumes.
My speed bump will consist of strong, flexible tubes across the roadway, interconnected between two small reservoirs in which environmentally friendly, "non-newtonian" product in liquid form is placed. There might be orifices involved to control the flow and velocity in order to work most efficiently. The density of the fluid or the orifice size would be the regulating " mechanism" with which my calming device would work. in other words, in the example above, a vehicle crossing the tubes at 30km/h, would feel NO effect whatsoever, allowing it to travel constantly at the required speed limit. but as soon as a vehicle exceeds the required speed, the tubes would "solidify", making for a rather uncomfortable shaking to the vehicle, reminding the operator that he needs to slow down to the desired speed. Therefore, is such areas, the driver could drive constantly over any amount of speedbumps, without having to slow down even once, and that would lead to safer driver behavior and less risk to other road users such as pedestrians etc. Manufacturing is very simple, all products required already exists, and there is no new technology development required. Only the putting together of existing material. Temporary units can be mounted on a trailer or mobile unit, easy to operate, and used in different locations. This makes this concept even more versatile than a fixed road speedbump that road users quickly learn the location of. Life saving device, on highways where accidents happen, a mobile device can very easily by deployed to forewarn approaching drivers of the impending situation. Kindly consider my idea, as it would improve life to all at some stage.
ABOUT THE ENTRANT
Name: Markus Van Wyk
Type of entry: individual
Number of times previously entering contest:1
Markus's favorite design and analysis
I am an entrepreneur that wants to make a difference, and my field of ideas are vast and quite diversified. I see opportunities by listening to people and also looking at conventional systems with an enquiring mind.
Markus's hobbies and activities:
Social squash, musician.
Markus is inspired by:
To see that I can make a difference to this wonderful world we have to make I living in, and hopefully, in the process of this adventure, capitalizing on the outcome.
Software used for this entry:
Patent status: pending