March 21st marked the official start of spring. With the flowers in bloom and the sound of birdsong ringing out, many see it as a time of hope and new beginnings. With the days stretching and the chill of winter behind us, many people are also hit by a desire to spend greater time outdoors. From the busiest inner-city streets to the quaintest country villages, people are indulging in the charm of a good, leisurely stroll. For those with a passion for motorcycling, it is a particularly exciting time, with the coming of spring acting like a call to the open road. But this excitement should not come at the expense of safety and comfort, for the riders themselves and their communities.
Minimizing noise pollution
Embracing your passions is a good thing, but given the high noise levels produced by motorbikes, it is important to consider the negative impact your sport can have on others. Signing up to a motorcycle club or heading to a designated racetrack is a great way to both connect with likeminded people and to keep the number of noisy engines on the streets to a minimum.
Though the buzz of a roaring engine is part of the pleasure for many, those who have a lack of consideration for the wider community, and who make illegal alterations to their engines and exhausts to boost noise, give even the most responsible riders a bad reputation. As such, it is vital to always comply with all relevant safety rules.
Considering the community impact of motorbikes
Excessive exposure to noise can have a negative effect on our sense of hearing. Over time, this can lead to significant impairment, tinnitus, or even deafness (whether complete or partial). Perhaps more surprisingly, there is also evidence to suggest that loud noise can impact the circulatory system. In order to limit the noise disturbance caused by motorcycles, Polish law dictates that the vehicles cannot exceed 96 decibels. (To help put this kind of noise into perspective, motor saws produce approximately 110 dB). Failing to adhere to this, or interfering with the vehicle’s exhaust system, may result in the receipt of a substantial fine or the rescinding of your registration certificate.
Generally speaking, motorbikes should only be used during daylight hours. Not only is the better visibility safer for everyone on the road, but it negates the risk of disturbing other people’s sleep. We should all be aiming for around 6-8 hours of restful sleep a night: One interrupted sleep is enough to cause headaches and irritation, but regular sleep interruptions can significantly reduce the quality of both physical and mental health.
This makes road noise (not least from motorcycles) a particular concern for people who live in busy suburban areas and close to expressways. Counteracting the problem is not easy, as it can feel out of your control, and even extensive exploration of an area before purchasing a property cannot guarantee continued quiet – given the rate of urbanization seen across the world.
With regards to more extreme examples, repeated motor rallies or regular late-night disturbances can be reported to the police or relevant local authorities, which may result in fines or the revoking of the drivers’ licenses. For more everyday situations, there is, however, an easier solution.
Earplugs as a first line of defense
As the easiest and most affordable means of protecting yourself against hearing loss, a pair of earplugs should be considered vital kit for anyone who rides motorcycles with any kind of regularity.
They are equally useful for those who live in areas that experience heavy traffic – whether you need the ability to work in peace during the day or to get a good night’s sleep.
Regardless of which of the above categories you fall into, we have products that can cater to your needs. We have plugs specifically tailored towards motoring enthusiasts (HASPRO MOTO UNIVERSAL), and offer custom earplugs that have been molded to fit the wearer’s ear, maximizing comfort and effectiveness.
For those with more casual needs, such as those who live in a noisy neighborhood and want a pair of plugs to hand as and when required, we also have a range of disposable options (HASPRO Multi10 and HASPRO TUBE, and HASPRO UNIVERSAL 1P FOAM).
Taking care of your hearing now is the best way to ensure the future of your hearing health. As such, it should be considered a priority by all.