Villagers slow speedsters down
HELDERBERG – Fed-up residents claim speeding motorists racing through the residential streets of Macassar Village are posing a hazard to pedestrians and young children playing on the streets.
Last Wednesday (5 August) there were two accidents within the space of just a few hours in Macassar Village, prompting anger and frustration among residents.
“The community has taken it upon itself to erect its own sand-built speed humps,” said local community activist Christiaan Stewart. “It’s not a permanent solution, but it’s better than nothing.”
The sand-built speed humps are dotted across various roads around Macassar Village, where there is a significant presence of children playing in the streets, as schools are still closed for some grades.
Community members also say they are fearful that some residents could take the law into their own hands should an accident seriously injure a child.
According to the City of Cape Town’s traffic calming policy, the human and financial resources available within its transport department to investigate and report on traffic calming requests are inadequate to address the number of requests received from across the metro.
“A backlog of requests has existed for several years and it is often many months before a case can be investigated,” the City said when responding to DistrictMail’s enquiry.
It added that the department will implement 150 projects from a list of approved projects this financial year, from the date this policy is approved by council.
The City added that ward councillors should identify and motivate implementation of traffic calming measures at any point on a Class 5 Local Street and at intersections or other locations where significant numbers of vulnerable road users cross a Class 4 Collector Street.
It did not clarify if the sand-built speed humps were legal.
“Unfortunately speeding and reckless driving in residential areas is commonplace in many metropolitan areas,” said Richard Coleman, spokesperson for City Traffic
Services. “While traffic calming measures could be a consideration if the area meets the criteria, ultimately it requires a behaviour change from those responsible. Given that Traffic Services has finite resources, much of its efforts are complaints driven.”
He advised residents to report any unlawful activities to the Public Emergency Communication Centre on 021 480 7700 from a cellphone or 107 from a landline, so Traffic Services can respond to the complaint.