Just the right noises, not deafening ones: NISS

Intertiol Noise Awareness Day observed in city

By our Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, April 26: ‘Make all the right noises, not the deafening ones’ is what tiol Initiative of Safe Sound (NISS) of India’s State coorditor Dr. Swagata Khan tried to bring home today.  

Addressing the media at Guwahati Press Club here today on the occasion of the Intertiol Noise Awareness Day, Dr. Khan said: “We need to declare some no-horn zones near schools, colleges, courts, hospitals, and the like where making sound has its negative effects. There was no awareness in India on sound pollution before 1970. Even in the world the Intertiol Noise Awareness Day was first observed in the US in 1996, and then it started penetrating into the rest of the world.”

The Intertiol Noise Awareness Day is observed on the last Wednesday in every April. In India, the day is being observed under the aegis of Indian Medical Association (IMA), Association of Otolary Ngologists of India (AOI) and the tiol Initiative for Safe Sound in India (NISS).

The objective of holding the day, according to Khan, is to bring about awareness among the public, transport departments and authorities who make government rules and regulations. “We want to observe the Day as the No Horn Day. We’ve distributed as many as 100 posters of No Horn Day at schools, colleges, police stations, DTO offices etc,” she said, and added: “Human ear is capable of hearing sounds up to certain limits. During conversation the sound being produced is of around 60 decibel (dB). A motorcycle produces sound of 90-100 dB, 120-130 dB by a rock concert, 145 dB by crackers. Rifle firing produces 140-190 db, and lightning produces 120 db. Since sound above 85 dB is harmful for human ears, all these sounds are harmful for us. Such sounds even deafen human ears immediately. Music above 100 db is also harmful for ears. If we keep hearing music of 100-120 dB for more than 15 minutes, we may end up harming our ears.”

Khan said: “What’s even more shocking is that some people make children to use headphone at low sound to make them dance. This is a very dangerous practice that may spoil the eardrums of children at an early age.”

The Supreme Court of India, according to Khan, ruled in 2000 not to play microphone, burst crackers etc., at night. “However, the move isn’t effective due to lack of awareness among the people and the authorities concerned,” she said.

“Inside the four walls of home also there’re sounds that may spell doom for us. Sounds being produced by mixer-grinders, washing machines, pressure cookers, TVs, radio and music systems may also harm ears,” she said, and added that plantation on road dividers can absorb much of the sound being produced by the honking cars.

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