Rock Talk

Do You Live in New Jersey’s Noisiest Counties?

There are more than a few places in New Jersey that aren’t easy on the ears – at least when it comes to road and aviation noise, according to the government.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) recently released a national transportation noise map, which identifies where planes and cars are the loudest. You probably don’t care about the din in New York or Los Angeles … so we used the map to zero in on New Jersey’s noisiest counties.

What did we find? The loudest spots in the Garden State are mostly in North Jersey, with other loud spots scattered throughout the state. Typically, the loud spots correspond to airport locations.

The government color coded the map, with blue/purple and pink marking the loudest spots. Blue and purple measure 70 decibels or more, which the government says is the noise equivalent of a vacuum cleaner.

Pink is the noise equivalent of someone talking at you. That might not seem loud at first, but think about someone talking at you … All. The. Time. Orange and yellow were relatively quiet, representing the equivalent of an office or a refrigerator humming, respectively.

Also, thanks to New Jersey’s infamous traffic volume, it’s not surprising the state’s highways show up as very noisy on the map. They crisscross the state like arteries, dotting spots of purple and pink throughout the state.

Here are New Jersey’s noisiest counties:

  • Bergen County
  • Essex County
  • Hudson County
  • Union County

All of the counties listed above showed spots of purple and pink with no, or few, uncolored areas.

There are also some counties that had noisy spots (pink), but were mostly uncolored:

  • Atlantic County
  • Gloucester County
  • Mercer County
  • Monmouth County
  • Morris County

If you’re looking to escape the blaring sounds of cars and plane, relief probably isn’t too far away. The DOT notes that “more than 97 percent of the U.S. population has the potential to be exposed to noise from aviation and Interstate highways at levels below 50 decibels.” It’s strangely worded, but that’s good news.

Need to get away from the noise? Or maybe you just want something fun to do outside? Check out these five places to spend a spring day in New Jersey.

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