Speed ​​bump

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Circle segment threshold
Brake threshold (Berlin pillow) with signs

A speed bump , or more often bump (also Speedbump or Ralentisseur ) is arranged transversely to the direction of travel structural elevation on the road surface , leading to a speed loss and thus to the traffic calming should contribute. The speed bump can either be designed as a segment of a circle, a plateau-shaped or cushion-like threshold or in the form of a round plate.

As early as the mid-1970s, Germany was experimenting with speed bumps, based on the findings from the Netherlands. The Delft Hills or Delft thresholds already in use there should also effectively slow down vehicle traffic in German residential areas. In 1988, speed bumps were also successfully tested in Krefeld as part of a trial project and the so-called Krefeld pillows were developed in this way .

The Berlin pillows (“Coussins berlinois”), which were tried out in Berlin at the time, are particularly popular in France. This refers to smaller speed bumps that trucks and cyclists can drive over or around.


In the course of time and depending on the design and origin, many different terms have been used to denote speed bumps. Thus, the thresholds are often general (and technical levels) as speed bumps , speed bumps , swelling tempo (hemm) or speed hill or circular segment thresholds referred. Depending on their origin or distribution, the terms Moabiter cushions, Krefeld cushions , Berlin cushions , Cologne plates or Delft hills have also established themselves. This multitude of terms can also be found in other languages. Especially often the phrase "sleeping" or "lying policeman" (Engl. Is here sleeping policeman ) is used.


Speed ​​bumps can be divided into the following designs:

  • Circle segment threshold
  • plateau-shaped or pillow-like threshold
  • round plates (multiple arrangement)
  • Rumble strips (across the entire street or just on the side of the road)

In addition to the above-mentioned designs, thresholds have also been developed that are pushed down by heavy vehicles (such as buses, trucks and rescue vehicles) when they are driven over. Cars, on the other hand, cannot press down the built-in springs of the threshold due to their lower weight.


After successful testing, the speed bump quickly developed into an important instrument for traffic calming in many municipalities . However, the speed bumps that were then erected in many places often did not achieve the desired effect and were partially dismantled.

There are many reasons for the dismantling. The speed bumps are often recognized late by vehicle drivers and cyclists, despite signs, and the impact they cause is perceived as unpleasant even at low speeds. Not only car traffic is affected by the threshold, but all road users (e.g. cyclists, buses, rescue and winter service vehicles). The desired reduction in noise and pollutants does not occur in many cases, as the vehicle drivers brake in front of the threshold and then accelerate again (unsteady driving style). Furthermore, undesired traffic shifts can occur, as the vehicle drivers avoid the road equipped with speed bumps and switch to other roads ( crawl traffic ). Short thresholds in particular can cause damage to the vehicle when driven over. The consequences are claims for damages, which in many cases are successfully enforced.

For the reasons mentioned above, the use of speed bumps is being carefully examined. The opinion has gained acceptance that these should only be used when there is little traffic and to support other traffic calming measures.

Measures to calm traffic are also occasionally the target of vandalism attacks .


The speed bumps represent a risk of falling for cyclists and motorcyclists. According to the General German Bicycle Club ( ADFC ), there must be enough space on the road for cyclists to pass them. A fatal bicycle accident occurred in Heidelberg when a 41-year-old man drove over the “Kölner Teller” and hit his head against the base of a wall. Thereupon three employees of the municipal office for traffic management received a warning with reservation of punishment . Due to the dangers posed by the speed bumps, the manufacturer recommends safety measures.

See also

Individual evidence

  1. "Rüttelschwelle" is available online in the Duden, but not "Bremsschwelle"
  2. Rüttelschwelle in Duden
  3. Kölner Knubbel , Der Spiegel, issue of November 1, 1976
  4. Richard Deiss: Silberling and iron - 1000 nicknames in transport and traffic and what's behind them . 2010, ISBN 3-8391-6269-6 , pp. 25 .
  5. Moabitonline.de Moabiter cushions about Johann Anton Schilcher, the inventor of the speed bump in Berlin-Moabit
  6. The intelligent threshold: traffic calming without compromise . Archived from the original on April 16, 2012. Info: The archive link was automatically inserted and not yet checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. Retrieved October 11, 2011. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.ttsolutions.nl
  7. ^ A b Günter Wolf: Street planning . Werner Verlag, Munich 2005, ISBN 3-8041-5003-9 , pp. 306 .
  8. "Parish asks vandals to pay up" district newspaper from July 21, 2012 (accessed on May 28, 2016)
  9. GTI meeting: Schwellenddie caught , orf.at, May 4, 2016, accessed May 28, 2016.
  10. Experts advise against using metal jacks on the road. Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung of November 4, 2017 (accessed November 10, 2017)
  11. After the death of the cyclist, the accident will be investigated. Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung of November 7, 2017 (accessed November 10, 2017)
  12. Heidelberg traffic planner condemned . Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung of December 8, 2018 (accessed December 17, 2018)
  13. Installation instructions and safety measures. (accessed on November 10, 2017)

Web links

Commons : Brake threshold  - collection of images, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Bremsschwelle  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations