A long-term global and clustering analysis of the COVID-19 pandemic effects on the sound environment of Milan, Italy: Road traffic and other noise sources

Francesc Alías-Pujol, Fabio Angelini, Rosa Ma Alsina-Pagès, Giovanni Zambon, Roberto Benocci

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Resumen

The different measures taken by the competent authorities to tackle the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic affected the acoustic environment worldwide, resulting in significant reductions of noise levels. However, most of the investigations mainly focused on the lockdown during spring 2020, in which all non-essential industrial and commercial activities were prohibited, being people requested to stay at home. The analysis of the data collected and processed by the wireless acoustic sensor network deployed in Milan, Italy, by the DYNAMAP project showed a significant drop of sound levels, mainly due to road traffic as well as other noise sources, denoted as anomalous noise events (ANEs). This work extends that research through a long-term global analysis of the COVID-19 pandemic effects from January 2020 to August 2021, including data clustering to identify local patterns of the sound environment of Milan. As a result of the first hard and subsequent second soft lockdown imposed by the Italian authorities, a double V-shape reduction pattern of the mean sound levels Lden (with and without ANEs) is observed, with maximum drops of around 6 dB and 3 dB, respectively, surrounded with similar progressive reductions in both pre- and post-lockdown periods, showing statistically significant differences. A complementary pattern is obtained regarding the detection of ANEs. The clustering of Lden indicators yields three different sound patterns in the second lockdown, both in terms of noise levels and ANEs, depending on sensor locations and traffic flow variations, unlike the first lockdown with a homogeneous behaviour throughout the city.

Idioma originalInglés
Número de artículo110036
PublicaciónApplied Acoustics
Volumen221
DOI
EstadoPublicada - 15 may 2024

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