Controlling Noise in Construction

Construction worker and machineryIn terms of construction, it appears that the only way is up. Anyone who visits the nation’s capital will notice the huge amount of high-rise construction and building work that is taking place along the banks of the River Thames in addition to the business districts. And this investment is not only taking place in London. The entire nation is undergoing a resurgence in residential and commercial premises development, changing both the visual landscape and fiscal environment.

The Value that Construction Provides to the Economy

Government figures show how valuable construction is to the British economy. Data from the Office for National Statistics show that record-breaking figures of £113,127 million were reached by the end of 2018. That is reflected in the continued increase in the number of construction companies operating in the country. At this time, a record-breaking 325,736 firms were operating in Great Britain, which was a 3.5% increase (11,146) compared to the year before.

Noise Pollution – A Major Concern

No matter how good this all is for the residential and business sectors, it creates another problem that must be addressed and then controlled: noise pollution. Fortunately, local authorities do have the power to evaluate and monitor noise being emitted from buildings, to ensure the wellbeing and safety of the surrounding communities. Exposure to noise pollution is well-known to have a negative impact on physical and mental health and delays learning in children as well.

Therefore, mitigating levels of noise by using acoustic consultants london  is very important when construction sites are considered. An obvious concern is any noise that affects the surrounding community. However, the workforce also benefits from protection measures that are instituted. Data shows that from 2017 to 2019 in Great Britain, 21,000 workers sustained work-related hearing loss. Therefore, for developers, it is a very important health and safety issue.

Government Legislation

To control noise on open site operations and construction sites, site operators and developers must adhere to several codes of practices and pieces of legislation. The key one is BS 5228. Strict compliance measures are set out in this British Standard to ensure that vibration levels and noise emissions stay within acceptable ranges to protect the surrounding community. This can include hospitals, schools, businesses, and residential properties. It is essential for these sites to be assessed and managed on a regular basis to make sure they adhere to the regulations. Failing to do so can result in the local authority putting in place an enforcement notice to shut the site down until appropriate measures have been instituted, which for the developer can have serious cost implications.

Control Measure Recommendations from the Legislation

To minimise disruption from noise being emitted from the site, the document recommends the following control measures:

  • Choosing optimal equipment for a project
  • Machine and plant maintenance on a regular basis
  • Making sure equipment is operated based on the manufacturer’s guidelines
  • Using electrically powered compressors instead of diesel or petrol
  • Having a centralised generator system installed
  • Using electric or hydraulic tools whenever possible
  • Not running or leaving machinery idle when it is not needed for immediate use, whenever possible

Why It Is So Important to Work With an Acoustic Consultant

It is critical to remain in compliance with the Britsh Standard requirements. Failing to do so can result in your site being shut down until the appropriate remedial measures are instituted, which can have major implications for needing to pay idle workers and for equipment hire. Therefore it is essential to work closely with an acoustic consultant from at the project’s inception.


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