Car Noise Is Killing Us

It’s not just traffic collisions that kill—a new study from researcher at Rutgers finds that the loud noises emanating from cars has direct impact on heart health in Americans.

May 6, 2022, 6:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


LAX Cars

Mighty Travels / Flickr

A recent study of New Jersey residents that finds car noise contributes to heart attacks, cardiovascular damage and higher rates of heart disease.

An article by Eve Kessler for Streetsblog USA shares news of the study, by researchers at Rutgers’s Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

“The study used state data to look at almost 16,000 Garden State residents hospitalized for a heart attack in 2018. It found that the heart-attack rate was 72 percent higher in areas with a lot of transportation noise (cars, but also air traffic; Attention: Stop the Chop NYNJ), with fully 5 percent of hospitalizations for heart attacks traceable to elevated transportation noise,” writes Kessler.

“The ground-breaking study — which is among the first such efforts in the United States — aligns with several European studies and likely could be replicated in similarly dense, noisy urban areas.”

France is one of the few countries in the world with policies that work to curb excessive car noise. Earlier this year, French officials announced a plan to install “sound radars” to detect scofflaws. “According to a study by Bruitparif, a state-backed center that monitors noise in the Paris area, a modified scooter crossing Paris at night can wake as many as 10,000 people,” according to a New York Times article by Emma Bubola reporting the news in February 2022. Paris has banned most cars in an area of the city known as a zone apaisée, or quiet zone.

More details from the recent study, connected to the larger collection of findings on the ill effects of automobile dependency, are included in the source article below.

Tuesday, May 3, 2022 in Streetsblog USA

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