Trevor Veale

Residents sound off over noise report

A LONG-awaited report into highway noise associated with the Sapphire to Woolgoolga Pacific Hwy upgrade has finally been released but some residents remain unhappy.

Traffic noise from the 25km upgrade has been an ongoing concern for Northern Beaches residents since the works were completed in July last year.

The report found residents in almost 30 homes endured noise levels in excess of the recommended guidelines but only two properties are affected by "acute noise" and therefore eligible to receive further mitigation works.

Woolgoolga resident Steve Moody, who lives within 500 metres of the highway, said the report failed to address the concerns of the wider community.

"RMS is taking a virtual do-nothing approach to reduce the suffering of the thousand or so households adversely affected," Mr Moody said.

"There are numerous flaws in the report that stems from flaws in the test protocol that itself is designed to have a broad acceptance of the status quo."

The report monitored noise levels at 39 locations to determine if further noise mitigation work was required.

The report measured the readings against noise guidelines outlined by the Environment Protection Authority which states "acceptable levels" of traffic noise should not exceed 55-60 decibels during daytime hours and 50-55dB(A) at night.

The report shows the majority of Northern Beaches properties experienced average noise levels of more than 50db(A) including 103 properties averaging more than 55db(A) while 27 homes averaged in excess of 60db(A).

A study of engine brake noise at four locations showed less than one per cent of heavy vehicles exceeded the recommendations.



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