Tube ‘loud enough’ to damage hearing

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It has been said that parts of London Underground are ‘loud enough to damage peoples hearing’. Many people have been warned, however, some say more needs to be done.

An academic commented recently, “The Victoria Line service is on average the loudest while other noisy sections of the Tube are said to be like ‘being at a rock concert’.”

Recently, staff from the BBC recorded the noise levels and discovered that at Liverpool Street and Bethnal Green stations noise reached 109 decibels – louder than a helicopter taking off nearby!

Increasingly, travellers are taking precautions. London commuter, Roberta Lenart said, “If you take one or two journeys a day it all adds up, so that’s why I wear ear protection.”

In defence, London Underground said they monitor noise levels on the network and are investigating ways to “further reduce noise”. A spokesman said: “While customers travelling on our network can experience noise, higher volumes tend to be for short periods of time and Health & Safety Executive guidance on noise suggests it is highly unlikely to cause any long-term damage to customers’ hearing.”

A train driver for over 20 years was not impressed with these findings though. He responded, “I now suffer with constant tinnitus, which I can only put down to the job I do. The noise level is excessive to the point of not being able to hold a conversation or even sometimes hear the train radio.”

When travelling below ground across London, especially if using the Northern and Jubilee lines, it seems a good idea to wear earplugs; otherwise, you could be damaging your hearing.


Eryn, Year 6

Burgh School

3 Responses to Tube ‘loud enough’ to damage hearing

  1. Elvie February 1, 2018 at 8:58 pm

    Oh no, that is horrible! Before Christmas, my family and I went on the train to London and I have to admit that it was particularly loud. I didn’t realise that you could severely harm your hearing though. Thank you for doing such a brilliant article – I now will consider this if I do go on a train.
    Keep up the good work!

  2. Freya February 3, 2018 at 9:37 pm

    Wow, I never knew it was that bad! I have been on the underground tubes and I seem to think it was the Victoria line so I’m glad I don’t go on it often. This artical is a great way of warning people about this, fantastic work keep it up!

  3. Emily February 8, 2018 at 8:03 pm

    Great article Eryn!
    I cant believe it can get up to 109 decibels. That’s so loud!!!
    Keep up the great work!


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