Reader brainstorms ways to slow speeders on Graham Hill Road

Dear Street Smarts, Q: I always appreciate your column. Is there any way to report a sighting of a vehicle passing over a double yellow line. And, if reported, can anything be done about it? This happened on Saturday, July 14, around noon, southbound on Graham Hill Road just about at Westwood Road – a mile plus from town. It was a light colored, mid-size car traveling quite fast. Also, is there any way to lobby for some 'speed dots' on that stretch of Graham Hill? I would like it if it were obvious – and annoying -- to drivers that they are going too fast. Thanks for any thoughts. Note: Per her request, Street Smarts is keeping this reader's name anonymous to protect against retaliation. She did provide a license plate number for the CHP to follow-up on. A: Yes, there is a way to report speeders and other traffic scofflaws to law enforcement and ,no, Botts dotts will not be installed to annoy drivers, according to my sources at the CHP and the Santa Cruz County public works department. If you can jot down the license plate of a reckless or dangerous driver, notify the CHP at 662-0511 and “we will send a letter to the registered owner of that vehicle describing the behavior and warning them to take seriously the safety of others,” said Officer Sarah Jackson of the CHP. “In cases in which the behavior is repetitive or regularly recurring – whether one car or many cars -- we will send an officer to the location at the appropriate time.” In regard to the Botts dots, they not only create noise for the driver who's wheels are bumping along on them, but they also can annoy the ears of nearby residents, said Jack Sohriakoff, senior civil engineer for county public works. “We don’t utilize Botts dots near residential areas if at all possible,” he said. What's more, “Botts dots are not used to control speeding,” Sohriakoff explained. “They are used to bring the driver’s attention to a severe issue usually already signed with the appropriate warning sign. The double yellow centerline stripe on Graham Hill Road already has raised reflective markers that make noise when you go over the centerline.” Based on the information provided, he doesn't “have sufficient information to warrant additional action by the Department of Public Works related to signing and striping of the roadway in this area,” Sohriakoff said.
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