University of Derby Associate Professor of Electroacoustics, Adam Hill, has recently completed work on a new AES Technical Document: AESTD1007.1.20-05 Understanding and Managing Sound Exposure and Noise Pollution at Outdoor Events (http://www.aes.org/technical/documents/AESTD1007_1_20_05.pdf). Adam led the working group as Chair of the AES Technical Committee on Acoustics and Sound Reinforcement.

This report is intended to present the current state of affairs surrounding the issue of outdoor event-related sound and noise. The two principal areas of investigation are sound exposure on-site and noise pollution off-site. These issues are different in nature and require distinct approaches to mitigate the associated negative short-term and long-term effects. The key message that is presented throughout this report is that the problems/ambiguities with current regulations are due to a lack of unbiased, scientifically-based research. It is possible to deliver acceptably high sound levels to audience members in a safe manner (minimizing risk of hearing damage) while also minimizing annoyance in local communities, where solutions to the on-site and off-site problems should begin with a well-informed sound system design. Only with a properly designed sound system can sound/noise regulations be realistically applied.

The report is intended guide research and professional practice relating to live sound for many years to come.

The report’s contributors are:

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