Dutch Cities Try Sensor-Triggered “Too Loud” Signs To Reduce Roadway Nuisance Noise

August 17, 2023 by Dave Haynes

The cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam are testing a system that uses simple, low-rez digital signs along roadways to try to encourage motorists – particularly people with modified motorcycles – to reduce their noise impact.

The program, running this summer, involves an audio sensor that triggers a message on the display that says, simply: “Too loud.”

Smart Cities World reports:

The digital signs are part of a broader Amsterdam approach to nuisance caused by noisy vehicles. Research by the GGD Amsterdam, the city’s public health information service, shows that motorcycles are the largest source of noise nuisance in the Dutch city. Just under 20 per cent (19 per cent) of adult Amsterdammers experience serious noise nuisance from motorcycles. 

Noises from mopeds and light mopeds and other vehicles also cause nuisance. Prolonged exposure to noise can also have an effect on health, which is why the municipality wants to limit this nuisance as much as possible.

Previous research by the innovation organization TNO has shown that extreme noise from vehicles is mainly caused by incorrect driver behaviour such as accelerating too quickly or making adjustments to the vehicles. The city also highlights the issue of illegal exhausts or interventions that cause vehicles to make extra noise.

Noise meters are being placed along the road at a number of locations and a little further a digital sign. The City stresses that during this test, fines will not be issued. The trial has already begun at the Stadhouderskade and on Molenaarsweg. The Europaboulevard and Tussen Meer locations will be added at the end of August. The trial with the digital signs is also running simultaneously in Rotterdam and will last all summer. 

I really doubt this sort of thing would get more than a smirk from the guys who get the exhaust systems on their Harley’s modified to make them REALLY LOUD, but I suppose it’s worth a try.

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