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Loud motor scooters can cause permanent hearing loss- Dr Smith warns

- Said scooter noise levels far above safe hearing levels
Former premier and medical doctor, Dr D. Orlando Smith has warned that the noise from altered motor scooter mufflers can result in permanent hearing loss. Photo: Facebook
Apart from the noise nuisance by motor scooters, the public has constantly expressed concerns about persons using the machines in a reckless manner, sometimes resulting in accidents. Photo: VINO/File
Apart from the noise nuisance by motor scooters, the public has constantly expressed concerns about persons using the machines in a reckless manner, sometimes resulting in accidents. Photo: VINO/File
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- Amid comments on social media that the COVID-19 lockdown in the Virgin Islands had brought a relief from the noise of altered motor scooter mufflers throughout roads in the Virgin Islands, former premier and medical doctor, Dr D. Orlando Smith has gone a step further to offer some word of advice to motor scooter riders.

Aiming his free advice to persons who ride bikes with removed or modified mufflers, Dr Smith, posting on his Facebook page on May 11, 2020, warned that the noise from the altered mufflers can result in impaired hearing, permanently.

Risk of permanent hearing loss

“Apart from the disturbance the high level of noise causes in many areas in the community, this practice can result in serious hearing loss to the rider, which can be permanent.”

According to research, sounds at or below 70 A-weighted decibels (dBA) are generally considered safe. Any sound at or above 85 dBA is more likely to damage hearing over time.

Researchers have found that people who are exposed over long periods of time to noise levels at 85 dBA or higher are at a much greater risk for hearing loss.

According to Dr Smith, the wind noise combined with the noise of the removed or modified mufflers raise the noise level far above the recommended 80 dBAs. “Please take note.”

32 Responses to “Loud motor scooters can cause permanent hearing loss- Dr Smith warns”

  • tretretrete (13/05/2020, 13:11) Like (42) Dislike (11) Reply
    Great advice! Doc, you had the power to do something about it but you didn't. This advice sounds a bit hypocritical coming from our former premier since we have been begging for relief for a couple of years now.
  • Patriotic (13/05/2020, 13:14) Like (6) Dislike (13) Reply
    wow . what about loud music DR? Prolong loud noise of any kind above above 90 (db) for 8 hours straight can damage your hearing. the KEY WORD HERE IS PROLONG. DR , I UNSERATND THAT THE NOISE BOTHERING YOU ,HOWEVER ONE CANNOT SAY THAT VEHICULAR TRAFFIC IS DAMAGING TO YOUR HEARING WITHOUT FIRST KNOWING THE DB AND LEANGTH AND DURATION OF SUCH .
  • WHAT!!! (13/05/2020, 13:25) Like (41) Dislike (0) Reply
    The scooters are getting worse and what about the fools with huge speakers in the back of their cars playing music (??) for the whole Island to hear.
    • Care. (14/05/2020, 22:30) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      This one is another disturbing thing .They now putting these loud boom boxes in cars more louder than the scooters .and new scooters are coming on scene even louder still.take note.
  • Voters (13/05/2020, 13:25) Like (24) Dislike (35) Reply
    Boss where our 7.2 m no body want to hear you. You failed the bvi, break up the ndp and empowered the governor to harass the new premier

    So for God in heaven sake go sit down
  • wow (13/05/2020, 13:29) Like (17) Dislike (23) Reply
    Sooo... After all that has happened, this is what he in the news talking about? Ok bring the plane or our 7 million dollars leh we send the scooters them back where they come from.
  • potter (13/05/2020, 13:36) Like (35) Dislike (0) Reply
    We love young people. But my God these scooters is like pain in your head.
  • Constable (13/05/2020, 13:36) Like (22) Dislike (22) Reply
  • l (13/05/2020, 13:46) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    Relief u say Doctor Smith not in East end
  • Outsider (13/05/2020, 14:05) Like (14) Dislike (21) Reply
    Shut your axxx, you had a chance to do something and did NOTHING!! Instead you named a hospital after you that is not deserving. Poor we bvilanders have to suffer financially because of you. "Old people always say who don't here will feel".
  • noted (13/05/2020, 14:39) Like (9) Dislike (2) Reply
    And the water is wet and the fire is hot
  • Eagle Eye (13/05/2020, 15:10) Like (43) Dislike (5) Reply
    Doc i really thought you was going to comment on those covid masks that is causing people to breathe in 60% oxygen.tell us of the many effects those covid wearing mask can cause doc, or you looking patients.
  • down2earth (13/05/2020, 15:14) Like (11) Dislike (7) Reply
    The scooters passed by my house on Sunday afternoon and I got an instant earache which I am still experiencing! If I end up with damage to my ear (I had both checked just last year), I am going to lay the blame at government's feet!

    Say one, say two. Loud noise coming from private homes and cars is also a detriment to people's health ... and as a result impacts on their productivity. Maybe fining persons would be a deterrent.

    Note: There were no loud scooters under the NDP reign. Please correct me if I'm wrong. (Never address the problems of today using yesterday.)
    • clown (15/05/2020, 08:44) Like (0) Dislike (2) Reply
      You sound like you seeking attention how is it that your inside your House and possible noise from out side damaged your ears ? You people love to exaggerate.
  • VI Fresh Water Yankee State side (13/05/2020, 15:46) Like (9) Dislike (1) Reply
    Occupational Safety and Health (OSHA) and National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) guideline for workplace decibel (sound level) is 85 dB. For example, any shift expose to 85dB for 8 hours requires hearing conservation protection. Any 3 dB over 85 dB halved the exposure time. Sure the dB of the modified bikes is much higher than 85dB. But though the riders may not be exposed for 8 hours continuously but the noise is still harmful to their personal health. Additionally, the noise is a nuisance to the community, impairing its quiet and enjoyment. Heavy fines have a way of attaining compliance. Confiscate them if they refuse to pay.
  • Why (13/05/2020, 15:48) Like (12) Dislike (6) Reply
    Why dr. Smith didnt address the problem when he was premier.
  • ? (13/05/2020, 15:58) Like (11) Dislike (7) Reply
    Don't worry about those fools DR
  • R Chalwell (13/05/2020, 18:49) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    Dr Smith is a person that until know he doesnot offend the person and a professional, I understand tha we are free to say what you think for fredom of democracy and here not there
  • SCB Resident (13/05/2020, 18:57) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    If you live in the SCB area, close to the newly erected scooter rental area, you can hear the noise from the scooters, all day, all night, disturbing the peace, NO MATTER THE Hour. It is just down right disgusting and quite disturbing, but the police refuse to deal with the matter. The politicians do not care, because the constant noise is not in their area.
  • hold on (13/05/2020, 19:32) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    we seriously thought the police department was responsible for maintaining traffic laws in this place stop cussing out smith and ask the commissioner of police what the fu(@ is going on in our country; this bike ting began with a few scooters now all over this territory have persons violating the Traffic laws and who responsible for law and order is the police commissioner BUT cat cut ur tongue to ask the commissioner what is is plans: bikes all over weaving in and out of traffice; uninsured bikes; bike without license plates; bike with out mufflers; riders with no headgear: each and every on the public highway and not one thing is being talk dat
  • Noise nuisance (13/05/2020, 21:46) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
    Please please I hope this government take this time to review this plaguing situation in this territory. This thing is no joke
  • Feel N Sad. (14/05/2020, 06:25) Like (0) Dislike (3) Reply
    Why he didnt talk about the medical or physical defects and affects that long term locking down have on people, thats something coming from the good Dr. I would welcome and glad to read and would have been more credible than this petty thing he chooses to talk about..
  • Sir Eel (14/05/2020, 07:35) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Noise Is a problem. But thats not the point!
    Enforce the law with daily check points on traffic violators. Government want money? There it is! This will reduce crime, noise, liabilty risks and deaths..
    Things will never change for the better if you turn a blind eye.
  • observer77 (14/05/2020, 08:16) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    can't even run a country had mark and myron killed the NDP under your watch and country and he now suddenly an advisor???? go back in your hold. They need to repeal the hospital name and name it RTO hospital
    • Intel. Analysis (14/05/2020, 12:34) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
      Dr. Smith has and will remain one of the most respected BV Islanders this Territory has seen. He has made a significant contribution to the Territory in the field of Medicine. Many could attest to him saving their lives when faced with medical emergencies. His time as Premier may not have been his finest moment and like past world leaders, he has made mistakes. We should not use this forum to dishonor him or anyone as far as I am concern. He is not speaking from the podium of Premier but from a field, he is well qualified to do so on.
  • My Goodness (14/05/2020, 10:23) Like (8) Dislike (0) Reply
    Please stop disrespecting our former Premier and good doctor. He is speaking the truth. When the health system is bombarded with people wanting assistance to buy hearing aid because they cannot hear then we will realize what he is talking about. During lock down every minute a scooter was seen riding up and down the road with this loud noise disturbing the peace. These boys not wearing a helmet, mostly slippers on their feet and sometimes riding with the front of the scooter in the air. Mr. Commissioner and Mr. Premier something need to be done immediately. These bike riders now feel they do not have to abide by the law I now see a new development last Sunday where a group of 20 or more boys now riding throughout the community some of them in two's. I am so frighten about this new trend causing major accidents. I am therefore begging for something to be done immediately. We are not a lawless country, please prove this to me.
  • musa (15/05/2020, 17:40) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    In force the law that all

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