Why is the Skytrain So Loud?

The noisy skytrain in Vancouver is a problem that affects residents in the surrounding neighbourhoods. Many complain about the screeching noise made by the passing trains. Despite numerous efforts to limit noise from SkyTrain trains, the noise levels remain the same. The reasons for the noise level are not related to the train’s type, track wear, weather, or temperature.

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Noise levels are not affected by train type

Residents in neighborhoods adjacent to the SkyTrain network have complained about noise, which is likely the result of aging infrastructure. TransLink is addressing these complaints. Noise levels outside the train are generally not affected by train type, but they can be exacerbated by other factors, including work-related noise or attending a concert. While the 85-decibel mark is often cited as an acceptable limit, it should be noted that noise levels can vary greatly from one person to another.

While the type of train does not affect noise levels, there are certain things to keep in mind to protect your ears. First of all, you should wear ear plugs when you ride the train. While it may seem like an unnecessary expense, ear plugs can help protect your ears from excessive noise. You can also listen to music through earbuds to minimize the noise level.

Track wear

Currently, there are no noise regulations for riders, and some areas of the skytrain experience higher levels of noise than others. On the Expo and Millennium lines, for example, the noise level is likely to be eighty to ninety decibels. The noise level is even higher when the trains are in tunnels.

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The noise is caused by steel train wheels on rails. The tracks are also subject to wear and tear. TransLink grinds and replaces five kilometres of track annually. Experts warn that noise above 85 decibels is harmful to hearing.


The sound of the SkyTrain is due to a combination of different factors. The tracks of the trains undergo wear and tear. TransLink replaces five kilometres of track annually. This means that the noise level is constantly changing. There is no legislation in Canada that regulates noise levels for commuters. However, there is legislation for workplace noise levels.


Noise on SkyTrain trains is a common complaint. TransLink says the noise level is not harmful to most commuters, but exposure can cause health concerns for some people. Some people, especially those who suffer from hearing loss, can be affected by exposure on a daily basis. Most of the SkyTrains in Vancouver use older transit cars, which have lower decibel levels.

One of the most common complaints regarding SkyTrain noise is its screeching sound. Many people have complained to TransLink about the screeching sound of trains, and a Vancouver woman has even petitioned the government to make it quieter. The noise has also become a source of irritation for her neighbours.

Residents’ proximity to trains

The noise of skytrains is often a concern for residents in the surrounding neighbourhood. TransLink, the city’s transit system, says it is committed to reducing noise and vibration. To do that, it has implemented several solutions. These include installing noise meters in neighbourhoods and working with apartment dwellers who live near train lines. The company is aiming to keep noise levels below 85 decibels. It is also replacing 95 old SkyTrain cars over the next decade. The new train doors have improved seals, making them less noisy.

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One resident, Paul Altilia, complained about the noise at his apartment. The noise levels he heard in his unit were around 90 decibels, which prevented him from watching television or conversing with his neighbours. The Citygate towers at Northeast False Creek are located near the SkyTrain tracks. Moreover, some residents are installing green light bulbs in their balconies to show support for the proposed Creekside Park extension.

Efficacy of earplugs in reducing noise

Efficacy of earplug use is related to its ability to lower the noise level. The study used a standardized earplug and assessed its noise reduction performance. However, some researchers feel that the use of earplugs may have a negative impact on workers’ hearing.

Participants in the study were randomized into two groups. One group used earplugs; the other group was not. Participants were assessed using a series of measures, including the threshold shift on the audiogram and the distortion product otoacoustic emissions. The primary study outcome was the reduction in DPOAE amplitudes between the two groups, with the earplug group experiencing a statistically significant decrease in the DPOAE over the frequency range of two to eight kHz. The earplug group’s mean DPOAE decrease over frequencies of three and four kHz was significantly higher than that of the non-protected group, with a median decrease of 2.6 dB in the earplug group and 2.7 dB in the unprotected group