TitleAssessment of railway activity and train noise exposure
NameAnderson, Craig B. (author), Turpin, Barbara (chair), Miller, Mark (internal member), Broccoli, Anthony (internal member), Mainelis, Gediminas (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - New Brunswick,
DescriptionThree train tracks run through Teaneck, NJ, a suburban city, unimpeded by road crossings; the tracks are as close as 7 meters to residential properties. In 2000, trains began idling in Teaneck for extended periods of time (up to 54 hours), exposing residents to persistent, elevated sound levels, as well as diesel emissions, and generating complaints. The goals of this study were to characterize the time-activity patterns of passby and idling trains; idling locations; and the sound emission levels of passbys, idling locomotives, and train horns over a one-year period. From October 2006 through November 2007, source sound levels were measured continuously with a Norsonic 121 sound-level meter and WAV files of actual sounds were recorded during train events. Concurrently, research staff visually noted train activities 24 hours/day, every third day, for three consecutive weeks each season, including train direction, track, idle location, locomotive-to-meter distance (idles), and other identifying information. Specific source characterization measurements of individual locomotives were made at measured distances with a hand-held Quest 2900 sound-level meter. Over this time period: ~1.2 trains passed per hour (1.1 daytime; 1.4 nighttime, 10 p.m.-7 a.m.); average passby duration was 2.8 minutes; and passbys were most frequent during the midnight hour. Trains tended to travel southbound during the day and northbound at night, resulting in horn blowing behind homes, while people slept, as the trains approached a grade crossing on Teaneck’s northern boundary. Idles averaged 87.2 minutes in duration, with the longest lasting ~36 hours. Idle events occurred equally in southern and northern Teaneck, but average idle durations in southern Teaneck were 2-3 times longer than all other locations. Train(s) idled in Teaneck for a total of ~10.7 hours/day, or 44.6% of the time. Average sound levels at 30.5 meters (100 feet) were: 78.1 dBA (peak: 84.9 dBA) for passby trains; 65.0 dBA (68.5 dBA) for single, idling locomotives; and 104.3 dBA (109.0 dBA) for train horns. Ambient sound-level measurements in neighborhoods had an Ldn of ~50 dBA. Sound emissions from train activity produced moderate-to-severe noise impacts in areas within 152 meters (500 feet) of the railway, especially during non-summer nights.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 91-92)
Noteby Craig B. Anderson
CollectionGraduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.