Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Racket Erupts at Noise Claim

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Racket Erupts at Noise Claim

Article excerpt

Byline: By Gareth Deighan

Are we really the noisiest place in the country?

A new report today claims Newcastle is the nosiest place in Britain.

The city topped a traffic noise table with an ear-splitting 80.4 decibels ( the equivalent to a loud alarm clock constantly ringing in your ear.

According to the report Newcastle can be said to be 100 times as loud as the quietest place in Britain, Torquay.

Experts say the level of traffic noise uncovered in the report are a threat to general health and well being and should be seen as air pollution. If loud enough, prolonged exposure to it could lead to irreversible hearing damage needing medical attention.

But Newcastle City Council hit back at the report ( which names Newcastle ahead of 40 other cities including London and Birmingham ( and claim it is misleading and paints a negative picture of the city.

The study, by Professor Deepak Prasher, of the Ear Institute at University College London, together with hearing aid manufacturer Widex, used measurements taken in the underpass on the A167 Central Motorway under the Swan House roundabout.

However, Newcastle City Council say the results were misleading ( given where they were taken from.

This is despite the report's author insisting the locations were chosen to give a "snapshot" of noise levels in Britain where people came into contact with traffic.

A spokeswoman for the council said: "We are very cross ( to say Newcastle is the noisiest place in the UK is just crazy and it sends out the wrong image.

"The survey measurement was carried out at rush hour beside the underpass on the Central Motorway before reaching the Tyne Bridge ( a location which is hardly typical of the noise levels found in the rest of the city and not a pedestrian or residential area. …

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