It’s a dilemma that’s surely come across the mind of anyone who’s had to survive Indian traffic – why do people keep honking at red lights? With no space to move ahead, it’s not like the horns can
actually do anything – and yet, decibel levels on the streets are deafening for absolutely no reason.
Fortunately, the Mumbai Police have figured out a solution, and it’s nothing less than genius.
The premise is simple – in a world of ‘Horn OK Please’, it’s going to be impossible to get the masses of Mumbai’s roadways to give up this long-standing habit. Therefore, provide them with a simple choice – either keep honking, or watch your signal reset.
The system seems quite simple to implement and install – consisting of a decibel-measuring unit, a sign explaining the new system to drivers, and a decibel-meter. On crossing 85 decibels, the signal would simply reset, with the intention to give the city’s drivers a little lesson in patience.
According to The Times of India, vehicle horns contribute to an absolutely ridiculous level of noise pollution in cities – on average, traffic generates a deafening 100db of noise – that’s 10 more than that of firecrackers. Concrete structures such as ever-expanding metro networks also magnify sound sources, boosting the volume by an additional 3db.
It comes as no surprise then, that Mumbai Police’s move was greatly appreciated by both the public and by officials in other cities – Bhaskar Rao, Commissioner of Police for Bengaluru, also appreciated the experiment on his Twitter handle.
However, a few others raised their own doubts, pointing out that the system penalises drivers who remain quiet due to the actions of a few others: