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Utrecht, Netherlands

Van Kamp I.,RIVM | Van Kempen E.,RIVM | Van Wijnen H..,RIVM | Verjeijen E.,dBvision | And 4 more authors.
INTER-NOISE 2015 - 44th International Congress and Exposition on Noise Control Engineering | Year: 2015

In the Netherlands circa 845.000 residential addresses, with some 1.347.400 residents of 16 years and older, are located within 300 meter distance to a railroad track. About twenty percent of these residents experience severe annoyance from vibrations and severe sleep disturbance caused by trains. By far the largest part of annoyance and sleep disturbance is reported in relation to vibrations due to cargo-trains. These findings are based on a survey which was held in the Netherlands in 2013 among 4927 people living within 300 meters from a railroad track. Exposure response relations were derived from modelled exposure to rail vibrations expressed in RMS and Vmax as well as distance and the percentage of severe annoyance and severe sleep disturbance. In this paper these ER curves are compared to what has been found in e.g. the EU CargoVibe study. The possibilities and gaps in the model used to estimate the vibration levels which is based on a standard method using 24 distance associations and the most recent rail traffic data (2011) are discussed, Also the influence of contextual and personal factors is addressed, including factors as noise levels and attitudes towards the expansion of the rail traffic especially cargo-rail at night. © 2015 by ASME. Source

Jabben J.,National Institute of Public Health and the Environment | Weber M.,U.S. Environmental Protection Agency | Verheijen E.,dBvision
Science of the Total Environment | Year: 2015

In this study, indicators are proposed to characterize the intrinsic environmental properties and external value of urban parks. The intrinsic properties involve both acoustic factors and non-acoustic factors, such as visual aspects and size. To assess external value, the restoration level is defined, which measures the nearby presence of a quiet, 'green' area at residential areas outside parks. The restoration levels of green areas are based on intrinsic properties and the distances of each dwelling to urban park areas. The overall environmental value of a park, the group restoration level, is defined as a logarithmic summation of the restoration levels over its surrounding residential areas. Restoration levels were determined for sixteen public parks in the city of Rotterdam and compared with survey data from questionnaires. Results show that the investigated parks display a large variation in the group restoration level levels, mainly due to differences in size and average noise levels. To validate the proposed method, survey data from questionnaires are investigated as to correlation with restoration levels. © 2014 Elsevier B.V. Source

Elbers F.B.J.,dBvision | Verheijen E.,dBvision
Notes on Numerical Fluid Mechanics and Multidisciplinary Design | Year: 2014

The question 'What are bearable limits for environmental railway noise?' is discussed regularly in different forums on a national scale and on a European level. A systematic evaluation of all aspects in what 'bearable' could consist of was always missing. The UIC research Project 'Bearable limits and emission ceilings' [1, 2] has brought UIC in the position to propose for the first time a well-balanced limit for noise reception. This noise reception limit is a trade-off between the disturbing impact of noise for line side residents and realistic possibilities for viable railways. Findings are based on an extensive study that was commissioned by the UIC and carried out by dBvision in the Netherlands.A bearable value of noise reception limits for the night (Lnight) is not lower than around 55 dB. More stringent limit values are not effective because:- For values above 55 dB railway noise is the dominant source for sleep disturbed persons in urban areas near railway lines. For values lower than 55 dB, it is more effective to spend money on measures for road traffic noise. This will generally result in more reduction of the overall sleep disturbance.- Below 50 dB, results show a large increase of cost. Noise limits up to 55 dB are cost-effective.Results are based on a 202 km railway line sample Rotterdam - Venlo and extrapolation to the ERTMS corridors. These ERTMS corridors are defined in the European Rail Infrastructure Masterplan as the main freight corridors (see Fig. 1). © 2015, Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg. Source

Verheijen E.,dBvision | Elbers F.B.J.,dBvision
Notes on Numerical Fluid Mechanics and Multidisciplinary Design | Year: 2015

Since 2008, the European Commission recommends Member States to establish noise emission ceilings along their railway corridors. These ceilings should prevent railway noise from increasing due to growing freight transport. This policy instrument is just a rough idea now and it is not clear if (and when) it will be enforced through a directive. However, as the impact of noise emission ceilings on future railway operations could be large, it would be wise for stakeholders to prepare themselves. This paper discusses the pros and cons of ceilings from various points of view, based on experience with Swiss and Dutch ceiling legislation that is in force already. © Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015. Source

Verheijen E.,dBvision | Waterman E.,dBvision
39th International Congress on Noise Control Engineering 2010, INTER-NOISE 2010 | Year: 2010

Environmental noise is generally considered a problem that should be tackled at governmental level. This is justified as long as citizens cannot really influence the amount of noise that is produced in their neighborhood. The consequence, however, is that people are not aware of their share in environmental noise, or worse, they are not interested at all in environmental noise and its (hidden) effects on health. Changing this attitude may be required for a sustainable quieter environment. In many cases individuals can choose between different means of transportation. Citizens are willing to take environmental aspects like CO2 emission and energy wastage into consideration, but up to now cannot decide on the noise impact. Will I take the bus or drive by car? Will I take the high speed train or an airplane? What is my share in noise impact, as a passenger, in these cases? To what extend do I have a share in industrial noise as well, being consumer and labourer? In this article a method is given to calculate one's personal contribution in environmental noise. In order to visualise this contribution, we are borrowing the concept 'noise footprint' which is used in aircraft noise control and reform this into a 'personal noise footpring (PNF)'. The PNF has no directional information. It represents the area which is exposed to noise and it indicates which activity of individuals is dominant. Besides visualisation advantages, the noise footprint features simple maths instead of logarithms. Strenght and weaknesses of concept are discussed in this article. Source

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