The rule will come into force from April 14, according to authorities
Kathmandu, April 4, 2017: In a bid to mitigate notorious noise pollution in Kathmandu Valley, the Metropolitan Traffic Police Department (MTPD) in conjunction with the Kathmandu Metropolitan City (KMC) are working to ban the use of pressure horns except during emergencies.
The rule will come into force from the Nepali New Year (April 14) to cut down the noise pollution, especially during traffic jams.
The rule will not be applicable to ambulances, fire engines, police vans. Drivers can use horn only during emergencies and at the turning points.
“Following meetings with transportation entrepreneurs and traffic police, we are now working on disseminating message,” said Ishori Poudel, chief executive at the KMC.
The motorbike riders in the Valley are infamous for unnecessary honking even at ‘no horn zones’, such as hospital and school areas.
However, this is not the first time such a ban has been announced. The MTPD had imposed the ‘no horn’ rule in certain areas inside the Ring Road last year, but without much impact.
“We will strictly implement the rule this time around,” said MTPD Spokesperson SP Lokendra Malla.
According to the MTPD, Kathmandu Valley has 828,000 vehicles. Large four wheelers such as trucks, buses produce up to 120 decibels (a unit used to measure the intensity of a sound). Sounds above 85 decibels are harmful.
Doctors say long-term exposure to pressure horns causes stress, blood pressure, aggression, hypertension and could lead to permanent hearing impairment.
ENT specialist Dr Rakesh Srivastava said this move should have been enforced earlier. “Nevertheless, this is a welcome move,” he said.
According to the Motor Vehicle and Transport Management Act-1993, drivers caught blowing horn in the restricted zones will have to pay fines up to Rs1,500.
Those found violating this rule may be fined up to Rs5,000 this time around, said SP Malla.
By Anup Ojha