Four in 10 Thane traffic cops have hearing problems, check-up reveals

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Four in 10 Thane traffic cops have hearing problems, check-up reveals

 

The decibel level at Thane’s busy junctions crosses 120 db

The bedlam that Thane traffic police personnel face on a daily basis is taking a heavy toll on their hearing, with as many as 42 per cent of the 556 traffic constables who underwent audiometric tests found to be suffering from varying degrees of hearing loss.

The check-up camp conducted by the Thane traffic police in association with the Indian Medical Association and Association of Medical Consultants found that seven per cent of the constables were found to have suffered serious hearing loss, which experts put down to the long hours spent at traffic junctions amidst severe noise pollution. Various studies have shown that at times, the decibel level at these busy junctions crosses 120.

 

The finding that these police personnel suffer from noise induced hearing loss (NIHL) is a matter of serious concern, said Thane Commissioner of Police Vijay Kamble. "The situation is tricky since they cannot shut the noise out while on duty, but we need to take preventive and curative measures," he added.

 "The preliminary results are out, but we will get a detailed report soon which will help us take corrective steps," Shrikant Paropkari, DCP (Traffic), Thane, said.

According to ENT experts, medium to severe hearing loss is irreversible and can only be contained.

Thane's vehicular population is over 16 lakh, much of it two-wheelers. According to Paropkari, a previous noise pollution study revealed that noise levels on Thane's busy thoroughfares was above 90 decibel, thanks to unnecessary honking by drivers when the lights turn green at traffic signals.

Police officers said this can can be tackled only by encouraging drivers to stop creating noise pollution, and by increasing the penalty for violating noise norms.

Date of Article: 
Friday, April 4, 2014
Source: 
Mumbai Mirror