Three days after speed bumps mysteriously appeared on W. 11th and Medanos Street, the City of Antioch removed them on Monday after they were illegally placed in the roadway.
The speed bumps showed up Friday afternoon nearly 3 weeks after Tim Hudson died as a result of a side show after he approached the driver trying to get him to stop. He was hit by the vehicle and dragged 40-feet.
His mother, Linda Hudson, has been an advocate for getting speed bumps placed on their street.
Monday, while the Hudson’s were attending the funeral for their son, the City removed the speed bumps after the Hudson’s left their home with the assistance of the police department which included two-officers and a supervisor.
Neighbors stated the City waited until the Hudson left their home before moving into remove the speed bumps.
Ron Bernal, Director of Public Works/City Engineer, denies that claim saying did not know the Hudsons schedule and wanted to remove the speed bumps as quickly as possible due to liability. He explained that Monday morning, he shot off an email at 5:00 am to City Manager Steve Duran and Police Chief Allan Cantando saying the city needed to resolve this issue.
By 8:30 am, the city met on a solution and it was decided to pull up the speed bumps on Monday because it was a high priority.
“We would have had to know the Hudson’s schedule and had to plan. We had our street crew, police department, traffic tech, it wasn’t something we can premeditate and wait for the Hudson’s to leave, we wanted to get it out as quickly as possible because of the liability it posed and it was illegal because it was not done through the proper channels,” explained Bernal.
Bernal further explained that they would have taken it out Friday night, but they were not mobilized with a team to remove them and they were not going to try to remove it with Friday night traffic and using overtime.
In a 30-minute conversation with Bernal, he highlighted the process needed to get speed bumps placed on city streets, saying the city of Antioch currently has just two speed bumps which were paid by a developer on Wilson Street.
He noted that since 1998, the City has not had just one formal application to place speed bumps on city streets after Resolution No. 98/122 was passed. The application was for Carpenteria Drive, however, it never was finalized after residents did not want to pay out of pocket for the speed bumps.
“The process is get 75% of the affected property owners to sign a petition they want speed tables installed. The effected property owners does not mean the street they are on, any of the streets that are effected by the speed table which could be side streets as well. You have a larger area where most people think they need to get the signatures. Then we would go out and conduct a radar survey and determine if the average driver if 7-mph over the posted speed limit,” explained Bernal.
Bernal highlighted that if its posted 25-mph, the 85 percentile would have to be 32-mph or higher for the City to say there is a speeding problem.
Once the 85th percentile was confirmed, the city would get written concurrence with Antioch Police Department, Contra Costa Fire Department, Tri Delta Transit, and the Antioch Unified School District submitted to the city.
A cash deposit to fund the removal of the speed tables if they do not want them anymore. Once steps are taken, construction may be performed by either the city or a private contractor.
Bernal estimates that the cost per speed bump is around $3,500 between installation, signage, striping to everything evolved. He says in most cases, this could take 6-8 weeks, however, if expedited, it could take 3-weeks if everything lines up.
Bernal also highlighted that people could see penalties if they illegally place speed bumps in the roadway.
“Normally if a contractor or a resident does work and unaware they are not supposed to do it we will just educate them as to why they can’t do that,” said Bernal. “If it’s a contractor who knows better, we would take steps to correct their behavior, including doubling the fee to finish the work. If they refuse to leave, the police department could be involved.”
The liability is significant if someone is injured on an illegal speed bump explained Bernal, so he wants to make sure everyone is protected.
“The reason we take any work in our streets so seriously is because if there is any liability with traffic and bicycles, pedestrians, anytime anyone is out there in the street, there is a potential for an accident or a problem so we always want to make sure the traffic control is correct,” said Bernal. “They need to have the proper permitting and that their insurance is in place to make sure that there is a problem the city is protected. It’s ironic, at the end of the day, we work for the residents of Antioch and so we are not trying to penalize them, we are trying to protect them by having policies, permits, insurance and those types of things in place.”
When asked if the Hudson family knew of the policy on illegally placing speed bumps, Bernal said there may have been some disconnect saying he was not sure.
“I don’t know that they knew they were not supposed to do it, I think most residents know that they are not supposed to go out into the street and start installing paint and obstructions to the traffic just because they know if something were to happen, there is some huge liability with that,” explained Bernal. “I am not sure what they did or did not know, our traffic engineer made a call into Mrs. Hudson on Friday and tried to explain the process but got some disconnection.”
Bernal highlighted that because of the disconnect, they went out into the field Monday to hand out information on the process as they were taking out the speed bump–see above image.
Bernal also hinted that traffic enforcement may be a better deterrent than speed bumps.
“I think that enforcement is the most effective way of reducing speeds and keeping people off certain streets if they are using it as a bypass,” said Bernal. “Different communities use them more but I do not know how effective they would be in Antioch.”
Antioch Police Chief Allan Cantando stated they are working on reviving their traffic department and he expects by next week they will have a 1-person traffic unit dedicated to patrol.
“As our staff increases, we are going to continue to build our specialized units. Although this will be a 1-persont traffic unit, we will be able to be proactive with traffic enforcement,” says Cantando. “It will be the officer’s sole function to enforce traffic related issues within the City of Antioch.”
Bernal hopes to work with the neighborhood on a solution saying they plan on doing a speed survey on the street in the near future. He is also willing to work with the neighborhood on the petition and help define what area is needed for signatures.
“I just want to say I am sorry for the tragedy in their neighborhood and I know it effects not just effect the Hudson’s, but everyone down there and our whole community and we are very sorry for their loss,” said Bernal. “We are all in agreement we do not want to see something like that again.”
- What is occurring on W. 11th is speed bumps, if this moves forward, these would be speed tables which are larger and not as destructive on vehicles.
- Per numerous news reports, the city has reached out to the family to provide protocol on how to accomplish their goals to reduce speeds in the area.
- According to KRON. Hudson was upset as she said what the city did leave. “They left a paper here with the city code number, and what you can and can’t do and I wadded it up and gave it to Jodi Hernandez, and said to to wipe their ass with it, because they will be put back in if I have to do it myself,” said the grieving mother.
- According to the Contra Costa Times: A city worker left behind about two dozen leaflets — wedged under candles that were part of a roadside memorial for Timothy Hudson — that contained “speed table conditions” indicating what’s needed before bumps can be legally installed.”They can use this list for toilet paper,” Linda Hudson said as she crumpled it up.
Why couldn’t the mayor or city just explain this at the council meeting. Sounds reasonable to me. I think the 11th Street thing is getting out of hand and people just need to follow the process and there would not be a problem.
I’ve had it with this story, the family wants to go around the rules. Using this logic 1000 speed bumps would be placed without anyones knowledge and then what? Speed bumps do not prevent doughnuts. Speed bumps do not slow people down. I get that the family is upset, but follow the rules and get it done the right way. Sounds like the city has reached out and the family doest care they want it right now and their way.
Remember Harper wasn’t willing to give it more than 3 minutes. It was a difficult situation also with him rude and Mrs. Hudson out of control.
Speed bumps will stop doughnuts… The time that they spent removing the bumps and the police presence probably equals the cost of the bumps. Yes they didn’t go about it the right way but are mayor or are new manager with his huge salary don’t go about it the right way
Sideshows are getting out of hand all across antioch, oakley,brentwood. Something needs to be done!.
Did they have to do such a horrible job? If feel felt like any type of process for anything in Antioch would work, I’m sure they would use it. 3 minutes for a wrongful death; I’d like to see the shoe on the other foot!
You can’t just go around making changes to city property as you see fit. I don’t fault the City of Antioch for anything here.
The fact is the city made haste to remove the speed bumps (during the same hour the family was at Tim’s funeral, uncanny isn’t it?) with a police escort of 4 officers, painting over the letters SLOW on the street, yet not bothering to paint over the evidence markers on the street from the crime scene which showed where Tim’s boots were and where his body was dragged! Could the city not afford the extra paint? Instead, they took out the bumps, covered the SLOW, and left the gruesome reminder of what happened for the family to see everytime they walk outside the house. That shows real compassion, Antioch!
Comments are closed.