MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Every week WMBF News Speed Patrol works with concerned citizens to help find solutions to speeding problems in their neighborhoods. This week the Avalon subdivision in Carolina Forest says they are seeing results.
This week Horry County helped place seven speed humps into the neighborhood through its Traffic Calming Program. Avalon HOA President Ed Stapleton says the county paid for three humps with the last of the money available in this year's budget for the program. The HOA took care of the other four. Stapleton says the county told him they would try to pay for one more if their funding is renewed in the next fiscal year.
The Traffic Calming Program currently receives $25,000 annually from the county, according to county engineer Steve Gosnell, but with money tight for the next budget he says only time will tell if the money is there again next year.
Councilman Bob Grabowski says he will work to keep the program, but that in a difficult financial year no program is off the table for debate.
Dru Gantzer, who lives in the Avalon subdivision, says she is pleased with the new speed humps.
"It really does slow people down," Gantzer said. "I noticed immediately once they put them in."
Rich Kuhn, who walks his dog in the area, says that the jury is still out on his street.
"I can understand why they did it," Kuhn said. "I mean, the kids do come through here pretty fast at night and I think it's an attempt to slow them down."
On the other hand, Kuhn says he is not sure that effect will last once drivers get used to the humps.
While out on the road, the WMBF News radar gun could not find a single car that wanted to chance it. All cars clocked slowed down to the required 15 mph, which was a much different story than one month ago when Speed Patrol visited the road. In February cars were clocked going up to 20 mph over the limit on the main drive.
Gantzer says she did a little test of her own to see how effective the speed humps were.
"Coming home from the grocery store today I thought, 'Let's see what happens if I'm not going 15 mph and I tried to go over it faster,'" she said. "It does jar your car."
Steve Gosnell with Horry County Engineering says more and more neighborhoods are getting in line behind Avalon to get speed humps of their own installed.
"This year it's really picked up with the growth we've seen and the amount of traffic on some of these roads," Gosnell told WMBF News. "Trying to control that, about the only way you can do that is through speed humps."
Grabowski says the next fiscal year's budget is likely not to be decided until sometime in June.