Sakchi roundabout where the decibel limit will be monitored during Diwali. Picture by Bhola Prasad
Beware big boys! Donít make Diwali noise. The Jharkhand State Pollution Control Board (JSPCB) is all ears.
Regional bosses of JSPCB have decided to monitor noise pollution in 18 pockets of the steel city this time, two more than last year. A team collected decibel readings from various neighbourhoods of Bistupur, Golmuri and Adityapur on Tuesday and will compare these data with those during Diwali this Sunday.
Regional officer of JSPCB R.N. Choudhary said they were simultaneously monitoring the quality of ambient air. ďI have held a meeting with my officials and briefed them on how to ensure accuracy while taking readings,Ē he said.
ďBoth noise and air data will be compiled after the festival. The report will be sent to the Central Pollution Control Board ( CPCB),Ē he added.
Pockets being covered under this Diwali survey include Golmuri, Sakchi roundabout, MGM Medical College and Hospital, civil court in Hume Pipe, Tata Main Hospital (TMH), Sitaramdera bus terminus area, Sher-e-Punjab Chowk in Adityapur, Kantilal Hospital in Bistupur and the two new additions ó Ashiana More in Adityapur and the deputy commissionerís office and residence in Sakchi.
To measure noise, pollution control officials are using a handheld decibel meter with a display screen, while ambient air quality is being monitored by a machine known as the respirable dust sampler.
The latter is installed at all three monitoring stations in Golmuri, Bistupur and Adityapur. It measures in real time the RSPM (respirable suspended particulate matter) in ambient air in a 10km radius.
According to CPCB guidelines, noise in commercial areas cannot exceed 65dB between 6am and 9pm, and 55dB between 10pm and 2am. In silence zones, the specified decibel limit between 6am and 9pm is 50dB and from 10pm to 2am the same is 40dB.
Last year, Sakchi roundabout, Mango and a residential complex in Sonari were found to be the noisiest during Diwali, thanks to firecrackers. While the minimum decibel was found to be 90, the maximum had risen to 120 between 6pm and 9pm. The decibel demon had mauled several other places, including Adityapur.
The RSPM in ambient air too had crossed permissible limit last year. While the desired level in residential-commercial areas is 100Ķg/m≥ to 150Ķg/m≥, the monitoring station in Bistupur read an average of 156Ķg/m≥ on Diwali.
How can sale of high-decibel firecrackers be restricted?