The Indian roads are one of the most congested and loudest in the world. There are many who love to honk and make the situation even worse for everyone. The high noise pollution on the roads causes a lot of trouble but the cops are not the most vigilant ones when it comes to the loud, illegal horns. Some people love loud horns so much they even get them imported from foreign markets. Here is one such person who has spent Rs 1 lakh to install a train horn on his Mahindra Thar.
This horn system is installed on the old Mahindra Thar and the owner has imported the same from Canada. The sound of the horn is just the train sirens. However, we could not determine the loudness through the video itself. The owner says that it is as loud as an original train horn. An elaborative set-up is used for his horn though. It is a pressure horn and there is much more than it meets the eyes.
The horn system apart from using the long bell pipe and the big bell at the front uses a complex network of pipes and a compressor too. This video explains the working of the horn. There is a different button to operate this horn as you would not want it setting off in the crowded places. The compressor is located in the trunk of the Thar. Pipes run through the vehicle to reach the front to power the horn.
The compressor puts air in a tank where it is stored and is ready to be used. Whenever the driver triggers the horn system using the special button, the air tank releases the air and it reaches the horn to blow it as loud as possible. The same air tank is also used to fill the tyres whenever required. Most off-roading spec vehicles carry portable air compressor. As lowering of the air pressure is needed when driving the vehicle in the places where there is less amount of traction available. Lowering the air pressure in the tyres increases the area of contact with the ground and in turn, the traction increases. When the vehicle comes back to the tarmac or better roads, the air is then filled in the tyres for the regular ride.
What do the rules say?
According to the rules, the maximum loudness of a horn cannot exceed 112 dB. While we are not sure about the reading on a decibel meter when it comes to this particular horn but in general, such loud train horns are about 130-150 dB loud, which is quite extreme. But we are not sure about the actual reading from this horn. That data is not available.
In Kerala, the cops are now armed with sophisticated sound meters that can be used to measure the loudness of any horn. If a vehicle’s horn is louder than the permissible limit, the cops issue a challan. Same cannot be said for the other parts of the country where no such checks are done.
However, the off-roading community uses such loud horns in case they get lost in the wilderness. On road, such loud horns are not allowed and are illegal.