Speeding Concerns

Car speeding through Olympia neighborhoodReduce Speeding in your Neighborhood

The City of Olympia recognizes that traffic conditions directly affect the livability of neighborhoods. Residents want to feel safe and secure while they interact socially, bicycle, walk, and drive in their neighborhood.

When vehicle speeds and traffic volumes are excessive, not only does it affect safety, but neighborhoods can lose their sense of identity and community.

Neighborhood Speed Watch Program

The Olympia Neighborhood Speed Watch Program is a volunteer public awareness program that promotes traffic safety. Trained neighborhood and community volunteers use a digital display to make drivers aware of their speeds.

Speed watch volunteers record speeds and notify registered owners if their vehicle was observed being driven in excess of the speed limit. Through this program, concerned citizens have an active role in helping to solve speeding problems in their neighborhood through awareness and information.

  1. Request Speed Watch: City of Olympia residents only - Call the Olympia Police Department at 360.753.8300 to volunteer and initiate a Neighborhood Speed Watch Program in your neighborhood.
  2. Get training: Individuals and groups who wish to proceed with the program are briefed on the requirements expected of them, such as proper data collection, use of equipment, and the proper behavior of the participants while conducting the data collection.
  3. Schedule a time to use the radar equipment: Working together, neighborhood residents schedule a time to collect data. This usually happens during various days and times when residents feel speeding is the worst.
  4. Forward information to Washington State Department of Motor Vehicles: City staff send license numbers of speeding vehicles to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) in Olympia for a list of registered owners and vehicle descriptions. The official description of the vehicle (received from DMV) will be cross-checked with the description of the vehicle given by the citizens.
  5. Letters mailed to violators: A letter from the Olympia Police Department is then sent to the registered owners of all matched vehicles. The letter advises them of the observed violation and encourages them to drive at or below the speed limit when traveling on neighborhood streets.

*This is a Public Awareness Program and notices to registered owners do not constitute notice of violation, go on driving records or impose a fine.

What We Don't Do

The City does not install Stop signs or Children at Play signs as a way to control neighborhood speeds. Studies have shown that both types of sign are ineffective at reducing speeds, and can create a false sense of security.


Contact Public Works at 360.753.8333 or email publicworks@ci.olympia.wa.us