Staten Island Homemade Speed Bump Hits Snag

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    NEWSLETTERS

    the speed bump in questoin, which is no longer there.

    Locust Avenue in the New Dorp section of Staten Island only stretches for two long blocks off Richmond Road, but residents say cars often speed down the narrow street. But when the locals tried to do something about it, they hit a bump.

    Monique La Forte, who's lived on the block for about 15 years with her husband Jim and their seven-year-old daughter, complains vehicles "race down the street. They do forty or fifty miles an hour."

    Staten Island Speed Bump

    [NY] Staten Island Speed Bump
    A homemade speed bump, designed to slow down cars and protect children, was steamrolled by the DOT

    Neighbors say they approached the city Department of Transportation with a request for a speed bump. According to Monique, "their response was they're waiting for something to happen...it was a little scary."

    So, after hitting a road block of sorts, some residents of Locust Avenue decided to take matters into their own hands -- they built their own speed bump.

    Jim LaForte describes the makeshift bump: "It was done with the iridescent paint. In fact, one of the people on the block used to do lines on the street, and he directed us pretty good."

    The LaFortes say there are about a dozen kids on this section of Locust Avenue, many of whom only moved in about a year or so ago. There are also two schools within a few blocks and several seniors.

    And that's why, Jim says, they constructed the road bump.

    "What are we gonna do? Are we gonna wait for one of these kids to get hit?" he asked.

    But as quickly as the speed bump went up, it was taken down by the DOT. The very next day, in fact. The LaFortes suspect who might have ratted on them but won't name names.

    In the meantime, the New York City Department of Transportation tells NBC New York that "the speed bump was only requested in August 2009." But they quickly added: "where we can make improvements to make our streets even safer, especially near schools and areas with seniors, we do. We will study the location for possible improvements."

    So, this may not be the end of the road, for the residents of Locust Avenue and their homemade speed bump.