Industrial Noise & Vibration Centre

+44 1753 698 800

Environmental Noise Measurement

Noise measurement, monitoring and analysis – plus something more …

In addition to conventional environmental noise measurement and monitoring, we add complaint cause/source identification and noise control options. This is a more effective way to address problems in meeting noise specifications or to eliminate complaints.

Despite classic environmental noise measurements to BS 4142, BS 5228 etc being technically very simple, it is estimated by the regulators that >80% of reports are seriously inadequate. In particular, unnecessary or inappropriate use of BS 4142 is rife, wasting time and money and exposing local residents to prolonged periods of unnecessary stress.

The environmental noise industry is largely predicated not only on measurement, but also on measurement, with a disappointing lack of knowledge about analysis and mitigation. We train the Environment Agencies and EHOs in noise analysis, interpretation and control best practice as part of a push to improve the general quality of noise reporting and complaint management.

BS 4142: use and misuse

Used appropriately, BS 4142 is a very effective tool. In addition to carrying out benchmark BS 4142 assessments, we can also advise whether there's a simpler alternative and how to avoid the common misuses of the standard described below.

  • Not appropriate: costly BS 4142 assessment are often commissioned when there have been multiple complaints. This wastes resources and delays mitigation as the sole purpose of the standard is to assess if complaints are likely. Instead, determine the precise cause of the complaints and identify the noise control options. This is faster, much lower cost, and leads to a rapid resolution. We can often provide this source identification with costed mitigation options from smartphone recordings by email within hours. Compare this with the weeks of organisation (weather etc) and reporting required for a BS 4142 assessment that simply tells you that the complaints you've had were likely...
Spectrum Analyser app
  • Tonal noise: a common cause of complaints. EHO and consultant listen to the site noise. Consultant: “There's no tone, so no penalty”. EHO: “There is a tone, so you should reduce site noise by a factor of x4 (6dB)”. If the EHO view prevails, the cost is very high. If the consultant prevails, no cost - but complaints continue. The company could waste a small fortune based on the subjective impression of a tone.

We always include objective tonal analysis in our BS 4142 assessments as it is best practice - but remarkably rare. It removes subjective interpretation and provides pin-point diagnosis for low-cost mitigation. As there are very capable free phone apps, you have to question the usefulness of reports that only include octave and 1/3 octave frequency analyses of tonal sources.

Contact me re BS 4142 options

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Construction - Demolition - Infrastructure - BS 5228 - Section 61

We not only provide a full range of conventional noise measurement and monitoring services covering all aspects of environmental noise (and vibration) for the construction, demolition and infrastructure industries, but also a range of additional innovative management and control techniques based on our unique engineering expertise.

These are not only re-defining what constitutes best practice under the regulations and standards, but are also dramatically reducing project costs and delays. Our reputation is based on the results we have achieved from introducing new procedures and techniques into major projects such as Earls Court, London (the largest demolition project in the world), The Shard of Glass, Chelsea Barracks demolition, Heathrow Express tube station piling and many others.

Noise – Vibration – Dust – Project Management Web Portal

Reduce the cost of environmental data management and reporting

Is a web portal that stores and displays site environmental data and other information in a single location with controlled access from anywhere. This dramatically reduces the time and resources required to manage and access data and can virtually eliminate reporting requirements.

Reporting – faster, better and lower cost
Provide controlled log-in access to parts of the site for EHOs so they can access all past data from their desks. This eliminates most reporting requirements.

Complaints – instant evaluation
Friday, late afternoon: complaint about noise last Monday. Log-on, scroll to date, pick off time and level, correlate with other monitors and with activity. Decide on action required. Done.

Stakeholder Information and PR
Online multi-media letter drop and newsletter. SiteNoise can include a work schedule calendar and pictures / video / project blog which are accessible to residents etc. – dramatically lower cost and more easily updated than printed media.

noise in the environment

We provide extensive specialist technical support, information and training on noise and vibration to both regulators (Local Authorities and Environment Agencies) and to industry. As we regularly deal with the same noise and vibration problems encountered, we have probably solved your problem already.

Our acclaimed range of EHO / EA specific noise workshops can help transfer time saving best practice techniques and technology in-house. This approach typically reduces the time to resolve noise complaint and other problems from months or years down to weeks - or even as little as days in some cases... This dramatically reduces the resources spent (freeing them up for other work) and also the time that local residents spend suffering unnecessary stress from unacceptable environmental noise.

We provide a worldwide service via the internet and smartphone technology. Make use of our Remote Control of noise service for a free 2nd opinion and evaluation of best practice - or contact us for advice.

Best Practicable Means / Best Available Technology evaluation service

Complaints or noise nuisance: how do you determine what constitutes “best practicable means” to mitigate. Companies employ consultants to generate reports claiming the cost of mitigation is too high to be practicable. In most cases, the suggested noise reduction technology is not best practice. Our definitions of low-cost BPM are game changers for regulators as problems can usually be resolved within weeks, saving time, resources and money.

We are quite happy to provide definitive definitions of what constitutes BPM/BAT with complete technical justifications, in court if necessary.

Noise and vibration training workshops

We provide very effective training for EHOs and Environment Agencies, from workshops to full CIEH environmental noise competency (some councils have profited from hosting in-house versions by inviting other authorities). These include:-

  • BPM / BAT noise workshop
  • Fan noise control masterclass
  • Venue noise assessment workshop
  • Noise recording and analysis workshop

The Delegate View: “one of the most relevant and informative courses in a long time..” .. “I’d hate to come up against you in court! .. the best value seminar we’ve ever been on” – “standard of presentation was excellent .. humorous and entertaining .. highly recommended”

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