Mr Short (Ilkley Gazette November 23) has drawn attention to entirely reckless drivers who, by his description, don’t care at all about the consequences to their vehicles of their conduct.

He points, for example to drivers of stolen vehicles. But it is reasonable distinguish between that group and most, even grossly, speeding drivers who do care about their vehicles. Entirely reckless drivers are rare and their occasional presence does not offer an argument against traffic calming when the overall result, including among speeding drivers, is effective speed reduction.

Earlier correspondents, without evidence, and Mr Short with a personal anecdote, have made bold statements about damage arising from properly installed and negotiated traffic calming features. This is not what the Government’s research found and it is also not what the AA, RAC and an officer from the Institute of Advanced Motorists had to say, and those organisations would surely be shouting from the rooftops if there was a problem: AA: “How should I drive over speed bumps? Slowly.

Driving over speed bumps too fast can potentially cause damage to your car. If you drive over them slowly, you shouldn’t see any damage to your car at all, but over time, regularly driving over cushions can increase the wear on the inner shoulder of your tyres.”

RAC: “… driving over a speed bump without slowing down can cause damage to the front and rear of the car, the underside, and potentially the exhaust system.” From my search of the RAC’s website I could find nothing from the RAC condemning properly used humps.

Tim Shallcross, head of technical policy at the Institute of Advanced Motorists, wrote on the Sunday Times Driving website in 2015: “Generally, speed bumps on public roads are designed to slow traffic to about 20mph. As long as you take them at that speed, it doesn’t really matter how you approach them — no harm will come to your car. (quoted in VanWise)

A comparison between slowly progressing over a properly graded ramp and routinely crashing at speed through unexpected but currently all too frequent potholes can leave no doubt about from where damage to suspension actually arises. Altogether, car drivers need not fear for their vehicles’ suspension at humps if they drive over them properly. It might help to drive over the potholes at no more than 20mph too.

Mr Short suggests the idea of a more ‘targeted’ scheme as being a ‘chink of light’. That prospect does not recognise that an outcome of the scheme is to make improvements to Ilkley by reducing speeds through the whole town based on the idea, expressed by the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (Highways Magazine May 2023) and elsewhere, that 20mph is now generally accepted as the safe speed for streets used by people walking cycling or wheeling.

Children liberated to walk to or from school don’t only need to cross roads at the school but everywhere between home and school, or on their journeys to their friends or on shopping errands. Adults who may worry about their mobility as pedestrians need to be able to confidently cross roads and junctions for their whole journeys if they are to feel encouraged to go out for their health and wellbeing.

Children behaving childishly or adults making a mistake can become less fearful of becoming or causing a road casualty when speeds are lower. None of that is achieved in a ‘targeted’ scheme and it is why area wide schemes to reduce speeds have been installed in huge numbers in the UK and beyond over the past more than 20 years.

Just as a footnote, if Bradford MDC does install any features that are not up to scratch I would happily queue up alongside Mr Short with my claim form. But I am not worried about damage to my car arising from the humps and I am not opposed to the scheme, which will make Ilkley a better and safer place to live.

Tim Parry