Characteristics of road traffic noise in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Noise pollution due to road traffic is a major global concern because of its negative impact on the quality of life in communities everywhere. In Vietnam, traffic noise has become an increasingly noticeable and serious problem in large cities like Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City. To gain more insight into the characteristics of this noise, intensive noise measurements were conducted in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City in September 2005 and September 2007, respectively. A comprehensive dataset of noise was obtained that included 24-h noise measurements as well as short-term noise recordings. The volume of traffic was also quantified by reproducing video camera recordings. Noise datasets from both cities were then compared with a dataset of Japanese traffic noise obtained in Kumamoto. The results showed that the traffic noise in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City was characterized by relatively high noise exposure levels due to the large number of motorbikes and frequent horn sounds. The sound of horns contributed a definite impact of 0–4 dB on noise exposure in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City, where noise levels decreased with the absence of horn sounds. Our results also showed differences in the characteristic traffic noise of Vietnam and Japan.