Noise Control Essay
Situation: You have been notified that there is a case before City Council to approve a new nightclub in your neighborhood. The owners of the proposed nightclub have operated several other clubs in your city. They have a reputation for being insensitive to those who live nearby in the community.
Question: What restrictions would you recommend the city require the new nightclub to meet before granting an approval? Should hearing protection be worn by employees?
Noise constantly interferes with people’s activity and rest, they are deprived of full-fledged rest and sleep, it seems their private life is no longer private as they are continuously disturbed with noise, so called unwanted sounds. This problem is very actual for those living in multi-storied buildings with poor acoustic system. People live in zones which do not ensure acoustic comfort to residents. More than 30 % are exposed at night to such noise levels which are disturbing to sleep. It is no surprise that annoyance to community noise is widespread among citizens (Lambert & Vallet,1994).
According to the statistics disposed in World Health Organization Community Noise more than a half of population in different countries is subjected to noise pollution. Let alone transmission of noise from one flat to another, building a new nightclub in the neighborhood will set up new noise problems without any doubt. Music generated from the nightclub will interfere with night sleep and evening rest of the residents of nearby houses.
Before granting an approval to the future nightclub owners City Council should ensure the security and comfort of the citizens. The Council should see to it that competent sound experts check the pressure level. If it is higher than 50 and 70 dB LAeq during the daytime and above norm at night, the nightclub should not be built in the area and individual sound perception of citizens should also be taken into account as some of them may have high threshold of perception. If it is possible each dweller must be asked if he agrees with building a nightclub, because the same sounds may seem noise to one person and appear to be music to the other; it depends on individual music preferences. What is more, the same sounds at daytime may be pleasant to listen to and unbearable, irritating to hear at night when one is tired and needs physical and mental rest, comfort and silence. A kind of survey should be made in order to display people’s opinion which may not justify the nightclub project paying for businessmen. It is common knowledge that hearing damage is frequent for musicians and their fans who listen to their favorite music as loud as possible; their hearing weakens under the severe pressure of noise.
That is why those who wear ear-flaps for a prolonged period of time make their players and radio work louder every time as they worsen hearing. Loud music outdoors also influences people badly, they become more aggressive, annoyed, irritated and inattentive. If they are deprived of good night sleep they may not be so energetic at daytime and if they do not sleep out because of nightclub chaos noise.
If nevertheless City Council approves of building the nightclub, the building should be designed in a way it should have sound reduction walls as when a nightclub is closed people have regular working hours have to go to work and have no time to sleep as they could only doze at night. But here arises one more problem: noise is also heard outdoors because visitors arrive and leave the nightclub, they usually arrive in a car and make additional noise because of that. While considering this case City Council should follow the citizens’ interests and care for their safe and quiet life.
Kryter, Karl D. The Handbook of Hearing and the Effects of Noise: Physiology, Psychology, and Public Health. San Diego, Calif.: Academic Press, 1994.
Saenz, A. Lara, and R. W. B. Stephens, eds. Noise Pollution: Effects and Control. New York: Wiley, 1986.
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