Assessment of noise levels and induced annoyance in nearby residential areas of an airport region in Oman

Issa Al-Harthy*, Patrick Amoatey, Abdullah Al-Mamun, Zahir Alabri, Mahad Said Baawain

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

There is adequate evidence from epidemiological studies showing an association between noise exposures and incidence of cardiovascular diseases and cognitive impairment among exposed populations. This study aimed to investigate noise exposure levels in an airport region and their effects on the nearby two neighborhood communities (i.e., Al Seeb and Bawshar). To achieve this, noise levels were measured across 15 different points within the communities for more than 3 weeks at a median distance of 3.5 km from the airport runways using a sound level analyzer. In addition, we conducted an online social survey in a random sampling of a total of 913 residents who were living closer to the airport. A combination of a 5-point scale and 3-point Likert scale was used to assess the resident population’s noise annoyance and the potential health impacts. The results revealed that the majority of the measured points have noise levels (55.71–65.24 LAeq dBA) exceeding both Oman and WHO critical limits. There was a general decrease in noise levels at points further away from the runways; thus, at points 2.5, 4.8, and 8.8 km, sound pressure levels were found to be 63.08, 57.41, and 52.31 dBA, respectively. However, steady noise levels were observed throughout most of the daily (24 h) measurements indicating continual exposures. Overall, 44.6% of residents reported noise annoyance level as very high, with Al Seeb inhabitants (46%) eliciting a greater percentage of annoyance levels compared to Bawshar (5%) due to their closer proximity to the airport. Also, the noise was significantly (p ˂ 0.001) associated with sleep disturbance, insomnia, irritation, and frightening. The majority of the residents complained of an increase in insomnia (41.5%), stress (34.3%), headache (47.3%), and cardiovascular diseases (16.2%). With the question of reducing noise exposures, about 41% of the respondents have plans of relocating to distant areas with low noise levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)45596-45608
Number of pages13
JournalEnvironmental Science and Pollution Research
Volume28
Issue number33
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Airport areas
  • Annoyance
  • Health effects
  • Noise levels
  • Oman
  • Residential areas

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Pollution
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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