Ambulances in Maharashtra can now use louder sirens

Mumbai city news: Maharashtra is perhaps the first state to issue such a notification

mumbai Updated: Jul 08, 2017 09:57 IST
Surendra Gangan
Surendra Gangan
Hindustan Times
Mumbai city news,Maharashtra,Ambulance
Move aimed at letting ambulances navigate through traffic congestions during emergencies.(HT FILE)

The state government has issued a notification to amend the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Act 2000 to let ambulances make their sirens louder to find a way in traffic during emergencies. The ambulances will now be allowed to blow the siren at 110 to 120 decibel from the existing limit of 65 to 75 decibels.

This announcement was made by Shiv Sena leader and Yuva Sena chief Aaditya Thackeray in presence of state environment minister Ramdas Kadam. Thackeray said he had been following the issue with government agencies so that ambulances can navigate through traffic congestions during emergencies. “Ambulances do not get the road freed of traffic as their sirens blow at very low decibel level and drivers of other vehicles come to know of their presence. In cities like London and New York, the noise level of sirens is very high helping ambulances make their way to hospitals easily,” he said.

The state issued a notification in May 2017 to allow the ambulances install sirens with higher noise. Thackeray said after pursuing the matter with the Public Works Department minister Eknath Shinde, the government installed a traffic tower to help make green corridor for ambulances during peak traffic hours.

He spoke to the media after inauguration of the Shivalaya, the party office at Nariman Point. The office has been shifted to the official residence of minister of state for housing and Shiv Sena leader Ravindra Waikar after the original office made way for the Metro rail line 3.

According to Section 5 (4) of the Noise Pollution (Regulation and Control) Act 2000 Act, the noise level of loudspeakers or any public address system at public place should not cross 65-75 decibels. The ambulances will now be excluded from the category to enable them to blow sirens up to 120 decibels. The amendment has been done as per the national ambulance code, the statement released by the environment department states.

“The Centre has recently issued the National Ambulance code allowing ambulances to have sirens with noise level of up to 120 decibels. Maharashtra is perhaps the first state to issue such a notification. We expect that the ambulances use it judiciously,” said Satish Gavai, additional chief secretary, environment department.

First Published: Jul 06, 2017 10:42 IST