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Pressure Horns a Nuisance causing Noise Pollution and its Effects on Human Health

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By Aryan Khan

Noise above 86 dBs is an extremely High Risk.

The word “noise” is a Latin word that means “hurt” or “injury”. Noise pollution can be termed as that type of sound that is unwanted and so excessive in magnitude that it has adverse effects on human health, animals health and on quality of environment. The main sources of noise pollution include industries, and workplaces, railways, highways, airlines, traffic and construction work. The National Environmental Quality Standards allows maximum noise emission limit of 85dB at a distance of 7.5 meters from the source irrespective of the type of vehicles.

Sound waves are produced by vibrations of air molecules which are sensed by the air coming from source of the sound. The magnitude of the sound is commonly measured in terms of the loudness of the sound and its frequency. Sound above 86 dBs becomes an extremely high risk.

In recent times, noise is recognized as a serious hazard to human health in contrast with the nuisance and the negative impacts due to prolonged exposure to this hazard and is considered a serious issue of public health. Some of the global facts regarding the public health problem are stated such that more than 120 million people globally are estimated of having disabling hearing difficulties.

Medical research and investigations have proved that continuous exposure to high-frequency noise can result in causing Psychological stress which ultimately leads to other health problems such as high blood pressure, and an increase in the heartbeat.

A large number of citizens have shown their deep concerns curbing use of pressure horns and recorded their complaints to the concerned authorities for banning it. Although use of pressure horns is already prohibited near specific places such as mosques, hospitals, schools, and residential areas but use of pressure horns at these places is a common practice. This behavior not only shows the impatience of these drivers but also their intent to violate the rights of others as well. We as a nation will be recorded as a hurry scurry generation in anthropological history.

Citizens have also urged to approach the high-ups of the chief traffic officers in different cities across the country and demanded to call a special counter-campaign against pressure horns usage being used in small and heavy vehicles across the country. Although noise pollution is an integral part of the present everyday life. These noises may be produced by industries, construction activities, loudspeakers, and sound systems contributing in generating noise pollution. It Is revealed from various studies that noise pollution created by the use of pressure horns adversely impacts not only physical but it also has negative impacts on psychological health. The prolonged exposure to the noise produced by the pressure horns can cause hearing disabilities and abnormalities by permanently damaging the ear drum or the membrane of the human ear. The citizens are complaining and have shown deep concerns against us of pressure horns as they believe that it is a major cause of anxiety, stress, hypertension, and blood pressure-related health diseases. The noise produced by these pressure horns is a source of creating restlessness and irritation, especially among senior citizens and patients. The pressure horns are usually used by impatient drivers with the intent to reach quickly to their destinations. These include such careless drivers who even ignore the signboards installed by the traffic police department for not using the pressure horns, especially inside the cities and congested areas.

The use of pressure horns can be reduced by taking strict action against its usage and violations of the traffic instructions conveyed by the traffic police. As the use of such pressure horns are against the motor vehicle rules under section 154 and 155 which states that no vehicle is allowed installation of pressure horn that produces successive different sounds which are harsh, loud, or shrill. Similarly, every vehicle is entitled under the Rule to fit a silencer for the reduction of sound from the exhaust of the vehicle’s engine.

Moreover, the noise produced by the pressure horns can be reduced to a larger extent through the use of diapers instead of these pressure horns. The citizens urge to impose strict restrictions on the use of pressure horns and the use of diapers should be promoted. There is a need of taking stringent action as only the guidance sessions and counseling is not enough until considerable penalties are imposed on the violators.

The authorities which are recognized for controlling noise pollution are believed in lacking the required expertise while measuring the intensity and magnitude of the noise pollution. To eliminate or reduce noise pollution through the use of pressure horns the standards of emissions set in the rules of motor vehicle use need proper revision.

The citizens have demanded strict implementation of the existing rules by government institutions. The traffic police should play their role in training the new drivers and educating them about the harmful effects of using pressure horns while driving. The ban on the use of pressure horns is possible only through the strong commitment of the traffic police department. An example of such commitment by the police department can be observed in Islamabad where the use of helmets is compulsory while using motorbikes in the Capital.

Pressure Horns should be banned for betterment of the people

The writer is student of BS Journalism at School of Communication Studies, PU Lahore and can be reached at [email protected]

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