AGAINST THE backdrop of their success in reducing noise levels during the festival of Diwali this year, the Mumbai traffic police, along with the ‘Awaaz’ Foundation and the Indian Medical Association (IMA) have launched ‘honk flu’, a campaign to reduce unnecessary honking on the city’s roads.
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Mumbai police commissioner Dattatray Padsalgikar said while announcing the campaign, “Motorists indulge in unnecessary honking without realising the impact it can have on their health.”
Dr John Panicker, national coordinator of the Indian Medical Association’s Safe Sound Initiative said that noise from excessive honking can lead to heart and mental health problems.
Sumaira Abdulali of Awaaz Foundation said, “The slump in noise levels during Diwali was a relief. Mumbai was low on noise and air pollution compared to several other cities.” She said the Awaaz Foundation is hoping noise pollution levels will go down further once motorists cut down on honking.
She said the noise level due to fire crackers this Diwali was 10 per cent lower than the previous year. Last year, the noise level stood at 123 decibels, while this year it was at113 decibels The traffic police, which has already registered over 12,000 cases of incessant and unexplained honking in the past couple of months, has been asked by the police to continue the crackdown. Around 1,000 cases have been filed by police for causing noise pollution.