Noise Pollution

Last week the House overwhelming passed a bill that requires hybrid and electric autos to be noisier. When the bill becomes law, it will be heralded as a win for pedestrian safety. The unfortunate reality is that it's merely a band-aid on a much larger problem that few are willing to address.

(from zombieite on Flickr)

There are so many streets in America that, by design, aren't safe for pedestrians. So many streets were designed to move automobiles at high speeds and it often turns into political football when policy makers are even bold enough to speak up on the issue.

Of course, there's something really twisted about a law to require automakers to make their vehicles artificially louder. Vibrant neighborhoods aren't great because they have lots of loud vehicular traffic; they're great because people can enjoy them outside of their cars. What we really need are safer streets, not noisier cars.

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