This paper examines the change in highway noise levels resulting from the introduction and enforcement of noise regulations in order to place the effectiveness of individual motor vehicle noise control into perspective. The assessment is made by means of a simple analytical model relating regulatory action to vehicle noise distributions. Field measurements of the effect of such regulations, although sparse, are in agreement with results predicted by the model. The following general conclusions are drawn: (1) Motor Vehicle regulations applied only to new vehicles form a rather long-term solution for highway noise reduction; (2) motor vehicle regulations applied to all operating vehicles have an immediate impact on vehicle and highway noise levels; (3) the optimum reduction of vehicle noise levels requires a careful combination of both types of regulations; and (4) the largest reduction in vehicle noise levels results from the application of an operational type of regulation on a previously unregulated population of vehicles -- further reduction becomes progressively more difficult and costly. Graphs are plotted for the following: Hypothetical noise levels for a single vehicle class; the effect of noise regulations on vehicle noise levels; the decrease of the average vehicle noise level with time for various new-vehicle standards; the effect on the average vehicle noise level of various operating limits and degrees of compliance; the overall noise levels of trucks operating in the greater than 35 mph (56 km/h) speed zones, both before and after the introduction of regulations; the overall noise levels of trucks accelerating in greater than 35 mph (56 km/h) speed zones after introduction of regulations; and the effect on highway noise of reducing truck noise.

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    • Distribution, posting, or copying of this PDF is strictly prohibited without written permission of the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials in this PDF are copyrighted by the National Academy of Sciences. Copyright © National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Presented at a Workshop on Motor Vehicle Noise Control Washington, D.C., 10-11 December 1974.
  • Corporate Authors:

    Transportation Research Board (TRB)

    Washington, DC   
  • Authors:
    • Sharp, Ben H
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  • Publication Date: 1975

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Features: Figures; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: pp 34-43
  • Monograph Title: Motor vehicle noise control
  • Serial:

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00098523
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB, ATRI
  • Created Date: Aug 27 1975 12:00AM