The cockpit of a F1 race car is considered by Guiness World Records to be the noisiest workplace on earth. Even if we ignore the ear shattering 140 db whine of the engine revving 20,000+ rpm for sustained periods of time over an hour, the wind noise generated in an open cockpit Formula 1 car would guarantee you have an epic headache in a single lap. Thankfully the drivers' are protected by the latest in hearing protection gear and their exotic carbon fiber helmets.
It may sound crazy, but the latest rule changes for the upcoming season starting in March 2016 will bring even louder cards.
F1 Racing Getting Louder in 2016? According to SkySports:
"For 2016, all cars must have a separate exhaust waste gate tailpipe through which all and only wastegate exhaust gases must pass," a statement read.
"This measure has been undertaken to increase the noise of the cars and will not have any significant effect on power or emissions."
To put 140 dB in perspective, it is roughly the same sound intensity produced by standing near a turbine engine found on modern jet aircraft, it will produce intense pain in only a few minutes. Over the years we have spoken with several pilots and turbine engine technicians that admit they were all too willing to make quick inspections & fixes on running jet engines without hearing protection. They can all verify that hearing damage happens quickly and is irreversible. For more on hearing loss, see our post Hearing Loss Fact or Fiction: Can One Loud Noise Cause Hearing Loss?
Do you have questions about how to protect your hearing at loud events like a F1 race?
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