Exposure to environmental noise in day care centers

Authors

  • Véronique Vaillancourt Prog. d'Audiologie et d'Orthophonie, Université d'Ottawa, 451 rue Smyth, Ottawa, Ont., K1H 8M5, Canada
  • Chantal Laroche Prog. d'Audiologie et d'Orthophonie, Université d'Ottawa, 451 rue Smyth, Ottawa, Ont., K1H 8M5, Canada
  • Charlen Lavoie Prog. d'Audiologie et d'Orthophonie, Université d'Ottawa, 451 rue Smyth, Ottawa, Ont., K1H 8M5, Canada

Keywords:

Acoustic wave interference, Human engineering, Noise abatement, Personnel, Child care

Abstract

Noise exposure for children and workers in day care centers is an important issue. Children and childcare workers are not only exposed to noise inside day care centers, but can also be exposed to high noise levels on a regular basis during outside play. Environmental noise measurements occurred at various locations outside a day care center located just a few meters from a busy freeway. Equivalent noise levels (LAeq) measured before the outside play period ranged from 62 to 66 dB(A), while they reached levels greater than 70 dB(A) more than 50% of the time children were out playing. Significant differences (7 to 11 dB) were noted between noise levels measured in the absence of children at this day care center and those recorded at a second day care center not located in the vicinity of a freeway. The recorded noise levels are all higher than the World Health Organization's recommendations regarding the effects of noise most likely to be felt at the day care center: noise interference, sleep disturbance and annoyance. Traffic noise is not only a nuisance during outside play but also for indoor activities, especially when the windows facing the major noise source (the freeway) are opened. Noise reduction solutions that could be applied to the day care center are proposed. This study shows the importance of carefully planning the construction of day care centers since the implementation of corrective measures for reducing noise levels can be somewhat difficult and costly once the day care center has already been established.

Published

2003-06-01

How to Cite

1.
Vaillancourt V, Laroche C, Lavoie C. Exposure to environmental noise in day care centers. Canadian Acoustics [Internet]. 2003 Jun. 1 [cited 2021 Jul. 26];31(2):13-21. Available from: https://jcaa.caa-aca.ca/index.php/jcaa/article/view/1522

Issue

Section

Technical Articles

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