Highway noise; increased noise levels due to roughness

Thumbnail Image



Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


University of New Brunswick


Traffic noise is considered an undesirable sound which results in a lower quality of life for nearby residents. To predict traffic noise accurately all factors contributing to noise production must be considered. The purpose of this report is to determine if rougher highways are a factor in producing a higher noise level than may be accounted for using traffic noise prediction techniques. Noise levels on six sections of highway of varying degrees of roughness were measured and compared to the predicted noise levels on these same sections. It was noted that there was in some cases a substantial difference between the measured and predicted noise levels. This suggests that rough highways do produce increased noise levels. However, it was also noted that pavement texture would likely account for a part of the increased noise. Because of this, it was not possible to develop a correction factor to relate increased noise levels to roughness. More study should be undertaken in this area to determine whether a valid correction factor is to be developed for highway roughness. This study should incorporate a greater number of highway test sections. As well, the effects of pavement surface texture on noise production should be evaluated.