Hyderabad: High-decibel and frequent horn blowing by vehicles in the city is a major source of noise pollution in both residential and commercial areas. The excessive honking from the convoy of vehicles seems to rattle the eardrums and frazzle the nerves of residents in the twin cities.
While the traffic police have started to strictly enforce laws against using horns without permission, excessive horn blowing is not being addressed. The city traffic police booked more than 3,300 cases for unauthorized horns last month alone. However, no action is being taken for excessive horn blowing. Dipshikha Mukherjee, a netizen, wrote in her tweet: “Today I called the Telangana Traffic Police for the 7th time to curb the menace of honking. They told me, "How can we ask people NOT to honk?"
Shiv Bansal, a writer who frequently uses the city's roadways for commuting, claims that everyone in the city honks excessively and needlessly, particularly cab drivers. "Many drivers on the road appear to find enjoyment in honking loudly and continuously. Unfortunately, it appears to be unchecked.
Many drivers, like Bansal, claim that cab drivers are particularly guilty of excessive honking. Salauddin, the founder and president of Telangana Gig and Platform Union Workers (TGPWU), said the union was running a campaign to inform drivers and delivery personnel to refrain from using their horns excessively. “Cab drivers are under pressure to finish their trips as quickly as possible. The delivery boys are also under intense pressure to deliver the customers' orders within their strict deadlines. Since the 10-minute delivery began, the pressure on them has grown,” he said.
According to data from the Telangana State Pollution Control Board (TSPCB), all residential, commercial, and sensitive locations where noise levels were recorded have noise pollution levels over the maximum allowable range. The levels are either lower or about on par with the maximum values only in the industrial zones.
The permissible values are 50 decibels in sensitive locations, 65 decibels in commercial areas, and 75 decibels in industrial areas during the day. The readings are 5–10 dB lower at night than they are during the day. According to a study done by Dr. Mohd Akhter Ali, an assistant professor in the geography department at Osmania University, and M. Kamaraju, a student there, car honking is one of the main causes of noise pollution.
According to the study, "proper traffic management zones with sound restrictions, coupled with keeping the volume of vehicle horns down to some extent, will minimize the hazard of noise pollution." Dr. Mohd Akhter Ali asserts that, outside of the Indian subcontinent, very few motorists beep their horns....