Resurfaced road even louder

in Transport Tags: Road surfacevehicle noise

We live close to a dual carriageway. Traffic noise was not an issue until the local Council decided to re-surface both carriageways and install transverse yellow marking bars on the approach to a nearby roundabout. Noise and vibration levels increased dramatically. The local authority attempted to remove them but remnants still remain and still cause some vibration to some properties in our street. However the greatest problem is now the traffic noise. We have measured an increase in noise of up to 10 decibels where the old road surface joins the new surface. The Environmental Health Department advised that it was a Highways matter. I am in contact with our Local Councillors but progress is very slow.

Ultimately, the environmental health department can’t really take action against the Council (unless they are based in the district/borough council and the highways are taken care of by the County council or another authority – such as Transport for London). However, you could try to argue that they still have a duty to investigate (even if, ultimately, they take no enforcement action) and that, as it affects wellbeing, it may be prejudicial to health.

Traffic noise is excluded (largely) from the statutory nuisance regime. Although, in this case, you might suggest that the noise is associated with a defect with the land rather than noise emitted from the vehicles themselves; that is another argument for the authority to get involved. My advice is to start the Council complaints procedure right away (as this in itself can be laboured). Keep communicating in the meantime. Ask neighbours to do the same. If you have no luck from them then you could consider taking your own action (via the courts).