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Re: Radio 4 from Alison

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  • Tobypaws2002@aol.com
    In a message dated 03/02/2007 07:18:08 GMT Standard Time, AlisonJ@superfiddling.freeserve.co.uk writes: Dear Rosemarie, I will listen with interest to the
    Message 1 of 1 , Feb 3, 2007
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      In a message dated 03/02/2007 07:18:08 GMT Standard Time, AlisonJ@... writes:
      Dear Rosemarie,
      I will listen with interest to the programme on Radio 4 at 10.30 re low frequency noise and how it affects us!!
      Hope all is well with you,
      Best Regards,
      Alison Kelly
      Hi Alison,
      I hope you are well.
      Have just heard 'The Hunt For The Hum' on U.K.'s Radio 4.
      Glad you were able to hear it.
      Most of the points made I was gratified to hear are already  in the Helpline's Information Pack, most of which was compiled quite a few years ago, so I was  pleased to hear them repeated.
      One thing they failed to say, though, was about 'pulsing' or a 'beat' setting up in a person's perception :  this could be a result of Constructive and Destructive Interference.
      (But there again, it was onlyhalf an hour, and this subject has so  many facets)
      Two or more  wavelengths can overlap each other, and like ripples on a pond, produce greater or less amplitude , depending on where the peaks and troughs coincide.
      I was describing this effect from my own reasoning long before I'd ever heard of Constructive and Destructive Interference.
      (Just showing off now ! But it is true.in the late 1980's, I imagined (say) two heavy diesel trains, a few miles away from eachother, with their areas of sound overlaping, I imagined where they overlapped, higher sound levels and annoyance might be experienced. this idea might account for the oft-reported rises and falls in amplitude for many people)
      I was pleased to hear Andy Morehouse and Dr Tom Moir, both of whom I was in touch with before/during  their research : both contacted me for background information. (Dr. M said he was new to the subject.). Andy Morehouse was kind enough to tell me not so very long ago that my idea of using Active Noise Control headphones as a test for external Hums hadn't occurred to him : as some of 'my' Hum hearers found, as I have, it is a useful quick, simple check, as long as the incoming noise is loud enough for the microphone in the headset to pick it up.
      I was pleased to hear Hylton Dawson (a person who appeared in my experience very early on in my acquanitance with the Hum, saying that there are many different sources of LFN, and in effect as I keep saying to folks, any one person might be getting a combination of two or more noises, overlapping. his is just one part of what makes 'diagnosing' what is happening to any one person more tricky.
      One has to be very careful not to leap to conclusions.
      I rather disagree with the man who said his hum made his teeth chatter : a noise that loud /strong should be easily measurable.   I suspect that his teeth chattering might have been a stress reaction, from tension in the jaw setting up a quivering, perhaps, a fatigue tremble after maybe hours of stress.  Much like if you lean on one arm in a reclining position for a long time, a fatigue tremble can set up. So when people say The Hum vibrates their body, one has to say beware, get it measured, as a seismometer , even a basic one, would detect that level of vibration easily if it were present in sufficient  strength to actually make the body shake like that .
      Certain frequencies apparently resonate body cavities and organs, perhaps slightly differing frequencies for say lungs, from, say, liver, those organs perhaps having different densities.
      But I have heard that 11 Hz is around the area that sets up resonance in the body, and this has been used as torture in Dubai. But again, if it is strong enough to make resonance, it should be easy to detect.
      The poor man in the programme who had moved several times, only to find the Hum was each time as bad or worse, now hopes to move to a thatched cottage with thick stone walls. 
      The thick solid walls might absorb a lot of noise, and the thatch having many strands that could be expected to absorb much sound will muffle many sounds, but any air gap, and  I would expect LFN to be able to creep through.  He might also , later on,  find to his dismay that masking other , higher frequency ambient noises like wind noise, as that construction will do, might make him even more aware of LFN, if present.
      The doctor tended towards the view that stress causes people to react to noises more. I agree, but what if the LFN is actually a nuisance? It can't all be due to the individual's personal pre-existing stress levels. Although, another point I've made in the Info Pack), if stress is present, then emotional reaction can be stronger than it might otherwise be.
      But I don't see why someone under LFN should be asked to train their brains to accept noise : this is like asking a torture victim to accept pain, 'learn to live with it' . In other words, the nuisance is at fault, not the person suffering it.
      There is far too much LFN now in our acoustic environment, and this aspect should be taken far more seriously, instead of the general free-for-all, do-it-until-you-get-stopped approach that seems to prevail.
      Another point the programme missed was that the general levels of LFN are increasing, so more and more people will start to be bothered by LFN, because of this aspect of it travelling furthest, plus perhaps several sources overlapping.
      It is not adequate to suggest that people ought to just cope with rising noise levels, as LFN penetrates and disturbs the environment, causing huge stress in many people.
      We all need to try to get sources of LFN muffled wherever possible, as the noise laws are too lax.
      As the background levels creep ever higher, so new hums are less likely to breach the legal limits, as they 'hide' in among all the other noises.
      It is a worrying aspect that some E.H.O.'s here in U.K. are already excusing LFN nuisances by saying that in urban areas, one must accept higher levels of noise, thus letting the culprit (and the E.H. dept.) neatly and conveniently off the hook.
      Anyway, I was generally pleased with the programme :  they packed a lot into half an hour.
      Many thanks  and appreciation  to all interested parties,
      and  all those who have added to the store of knowledge about The Hum problem.
      Best Regards,
      Rosemarie Mann.
      ( LFNSH )
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