This is stupid in so many ways:

BBC: Ramp creates power as cars pass

A road ramp that uses passing cars to generate power has been developed.

Dorset inventor Peter Hughes' Electro-Kinetic Road Ramp creates around 10kW of power each time a car drives over its metal plates.

More than 200 local authorities had expressed an interest in ordering the £25,000 ramps to power their traffic lights and road signs, Mr Hughes said.

In other words, these people want to steal your petrol:

These ramps work by converting some of your car's kinetic energy into electrical energy. In other words, they slow down your car to make electricity. You will then have to put your foot down for a few seconds to restore your car to its former speed, wasting petrol in the process. And that's not to mention the wear and tear on your car as it goes over these unnecessary humps.

This is an extremely inefficient and environmentally hostile way of powering traffic lights, but your local authority will love it, because it will cut down on its electricity bills, and because it is anti-car. It's even more anti-bike.

The electro-kinetic road ramp website claims that it generates free electrical energy. Another way to achieve this is to bypass your electricity meter and power your house directly from the National Grid. This is known as abstracting electricity, which is a criminal offence under section 13 of the 1968 Theft Act, and is punishable by up to five years' imprisonment and/or fines of up to £5,000. In what way are these stupid ramps any different? They are stealing somebody else's energy.

Time to write to the Ladyman.

Richard Carter

A fat, bearded chap with a Charles Darwin fixation.


  1. I see a need for a slight re-design.
    If they rotate the angle of the whole ramp by 90 degrees they will then be able to do away with the costly electronics, the need for traffic lights and any road signs.
    This will also meet local authority approval in assisting with their traffic reduction strategies.

  2. Of course, another way to save on electricity would be to reclaim the night and get rid of streetlights altogether—but I don't see many votes in that.

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