Visakhapatnam: Noise pollution has reached intolerable levels in the city. Studies reveal that commercial areas, industrial regions and even residential zones experience extreme levels of noise pollution making life miserable for the denizens. Rising vehicular traffic, industrial noise and huge commercialization are the culprits for the current distressing scenario, according to environmentalists.
The noise pollution is the release of unwanted sound into the environment. It disturbs life and affects the health conditions of the people adversely. It is measured in the units of decibels. The noise, which is more than 115 dB, is tolerant.
The researchers from Andhra University and APPCB have chosen Rani Chandramathi Devi hospital, Lawson’s Bay Colony, Jagadamba junction, APSRTC Bus Complex junction, Seethammadhara junction and industrial zones to monitor the noise levels.
They found that in none of the said areas the noise levels were within the permissible limits. The recommended noise level is 55dB and in many areas in industrial zones the noise levels touch 90-100decibels. In commercial areas the levels rise above 70-80 decibels habitually and in residential areas it ranges between 60 and 75.
Cochlea is the auditory portion of the inner ear. It sends communication to the brain by the small hair cells. Intense sounds damage these cells, and sometimes even beyond recovery, due to prolonged exposure to louder noise.
A general survey carried out by the National Environmental Engineering Research Institute, Nagpur, in four major cities, including Mumbai, showed that 36 per cent of the population has hearing loss for both ears.
“Noise pollution can play havoc with the nervous system affecting the physical and psychological behaviour of the individuals. It may cause nausea, vomiting, pain, hypertension, high blood pressure, cardiovascular problems, sleep disturbance, restlessness, depression, fatigue, allergy, mental stress and annoyance. Visakhapatnam is not an exception to such cases,” said Dr C. Rama Krishna, an ENT specialist.
The study also revealed that in silence zones like KGH, RCD hospital too, tranquillity is being disturbed.
Apart from industrial operations in and around the city the flight services every day are making life of the people in Convent Junction, Gnanapuram, Gajuwaka, Kancharapalem and other areas, close to airport, agonizing with sound pollution. AP Pollution Control Board authorities admit that 40 per cent of residential colonies are hit by high noise levels.