Motorcycles with replaced silencers pose health risks to city residents

  • Nikhil Sharma, Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Aug 04, 2016 14:39 IST
A Modified bike in Chandigarh on Tuesday (Anil Dayal /HT photo)

Youngsters whizzing in their modified motorcycles that create a loud noise are troubling the city residents, especially during the night, causing health problems to the ailing and senior citizens.

Many youngsters replace stock silencers with loud ones, creating sound which is a source of nuisance.

The problem is acute in sectors having paying guest accommodations and with proximity to educational institutions.

“These bikes create a deafening sound and sometimes it becomes impossible to sit and focus on work even inside the house. At times, sound startles us out of sleep,” said, Arvind Goyal, a Sector-15 resident.

Arvind in his complaint submitted to the Chandigarh police has sought action against this practice, and said the noise emanating from such motorcycles, especially Royal Enfield bikes, could prove critical for residents. NO ADS, NOTICES ISSUED AGAINST SUCH BIKES

The Environment (Protection) Rules, 1986, specify 80 decibels as the noise limit for motorcycles and scooters.

In a reply to an RTI application Arvind Goyal had filed with the Chandigarh police, no alteration is permitted in any motor vehicle registered by the authority under the Motor Vehicle Act, 1988.

The department denied to have initiated any awareness campaign through notices and advertisements by the city traffic police about the menace created by such vehicles.

“No notice or advertisement has been issued by the Chandigarh traffic police regarding alteration as any alteration is to be approved by the Registering and Licensing Authority,” reads the RTI.

Though the police failed to mention the number of challans issued against modified bikes, they claimed to have challaned 2,278 vehicles causing noise pollution from January 2014 to April this year.

“The police should not only catch the violators but should also identify the mechanics and shop owners who modify these vehicles. The authorities need to make people aware that such modifications in vehicles are illegal,” Arvind said.

The police say that no action could be taken against motor mechanics.

Santosh Randhawa, a senior citizen and resident of Sector 21, Chandigarh, said, “Recently, I was walking in the street with the help of a stick when suddenly two bikers whizzed pass me with a loud sound and scary horn. I was startled and lost my balance. Youngsters drive at high speed even at night and the little sleep I get after taking pills is disrupted.”

Dr Ravindra Khaiwal, assistant professor, environmental heath, PGI school of public health, said, “Excessive noise pollution leads to several health disorders such as hypertension, irritation and sleep disturbance.”

He said exposure to sudden loud noise can even cause temporary hearing loss for a few minutes.

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