Spatial-Temporal Differentials in Traffic and Music Generated Noise at Selected Sites in Kisumu City, Kenya
Author(s): Walter Ogutu Amulla, Aaron Gichaba Misati
Despite its well-documented effects on health and wellbeing, noise remains one of the most poorly regulated type of pollution in African cities. Some studies have shown that automobiles and music stores are among the leading sources of noise pollution in African urban centers with equivalent sound pressure levels largely exceeding regulatory limits. These elevated noise levels exposes the public to auditory and non-auditory effects that impair health and quality of life. Regardless, research on road traffic and music-generated noise remain scarce in Kenya and Africa at large. This study sought to assess noise associated with traffic and music at 50 purposively selected sites in Kisumu city, Kenya. Sound Pressure Levels (SPL) were measured using EXTECH® digital sound level meter, recorded in a data sheet and analyzed descriptively on SPSS version 23. Results showed that the mean traffic-generated noise was 70.39 ± 10.10dBA, while music-generated noise was 86.35 ± 6.92dBA. Independent sample t-test showed that the mean SPL for music was significantly higher than traffic. There was considerable variability in traffic noise by site with highways having highest (76.25 ± 5.42dBA) followed by roundabouts (75.0 ± 4.97 dBA) and lastly by termini (71.60 ± 4.81dBA). Noise at resting parks varied with distance from high traffic zones. Both vehicular and music-related noise exceeded maximum permissible limits, but music-related noise was significantly higher than vehicular noise.