What's NYC's Most Annoying Sound?

Nominate and Vote

Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - 10:00 AM

(Pamhule on Flickr/flickr)

On the show today, we're talking about loud noises in the city. Now, we want to know what NYC's most annoying sound is. Nominate your sound, and once we have some suggestions then we'll put them in a bracket and let you vote. By the end of the week, we'll have crowned a winner!

→ Nominate your sound on Twitter using the hashtag #ANNOISE 

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Comments [43]

oscar from ny

that freaking music from the ice cream truck when it goes on forever...

Aug. 15 2012 11:54 PM
Mary McCarthy from Queens ny

The loud horn chirp when people click the locks on their car doors closed or set on the alarm

Aug. 07 2012 09:01 PM
Chris W from Upper East Side.

1. The new deep bass whoop of police car sirens.
2. The incessant ambulances flipping sirens on and off and using different sirens.
3. Jake brakes on trucks that are going too fast.
4. Exhaust from diesel trucks.
5. The scrape-scrape-scrape sound of the construction vehicles for 2nd Avenue Subway.
6. The beep-beep-beep sound of construction vehicles for 2nd Avenue Subway.
7. The ice cream truck.
8. The cacophony of air being released and that piercing screech of the bus as it kneels.
9. Those rude freight train horns and other multi-sound horns people put on their cars and SUVs just to be jerks.
10. Long car honks.
11. The newspaper screamers at Penn Station.
12. The street sweeper.
13. Jackhammers & saws cutting the street.

Aug. 07 2012 10:36 AM
Bambi from nyc

#2 or 3 express as it screams past the local stations at 79th and 86th sts.

Aug. 05 2012 09:02 PM
Bocheball from nyc

screaming babies and the their parents who continue to let them scream. they're only cute when it's YOUR baby.
otherwise its a pouch with a voice-box.

Aug. 05 2012 09:00 PM
Bobby from Manhattan

The truck that cleans the boilers in apartment buildings. The noise is unexplainable.

Aug. 05 2012 08:35 PM
Joey from Manhattan

Think it's too late to nominate, but for me its the deep, thuddy CLANG of beer kegs being dropped on the street as they are unloaded and delivered to the MANY bars here in the E. Village. Its louder than you'd think!

Aug. 02 2012 09:31 PM

That line in my previous comment should read,



Aug. 02 2012 03:21 PM
wendy from manhattan

The cacophony of ambulances/police cars that zoom around from time to time. I know they are necessary (most of the time) and often wonder why, with nyc's 8 million people, they aren't out there constantly... but the noise generally makes me wonder how humans can live here. Exacerbated when Con Ed drilling is in action and giant trucks are driving by.

Aug. 02 2012 03:17 PM

Impatient hostile drivers who lean on the horn in midtown in sea of traffic and pedestrians.

Hey, Pal, here ya gonna GO ????

Aug. 02 2012 03:11 PM
marthar from brooklyn

Hats off to the first commenter, jac Radoff.
I spent a year away thanking heaven every day that I could listen to morning radio without having to hear the grotesquely percussive, jangly "music" Brian's show uses and without having to jump for the set to turn it off. What heaven when Lopate's theme music comes on!

Jul. 30 2012 12:36 AM
Jac Radoff from New York City

One of the most annoying sounds on radio is the introduction to the Brian Lehrer show. Is this music from Hell? Then comes Brian, who has perfected the art of healing the rich and powerful.

Jul. 28 2012 03:09 PM
Ursula from Clinton Hill

screeching subway brakes

Jul. 27 2012 04:10 PM

the sound of the express train roaring past your station when you are standing on a local track. At least if it's my train, it's loud but I get something out of it.

Jul. 24 2012 05:45 PM
della from chelsea

Car alarm status indicators (illegal by the way) which are activated by street vibrations.

Jul. 24 2012 05:14 PM
Sean from Brooklyn

Agree with Bernie: the e-alarm for subway door exits. But I say as a runner up, any speech on a subway train that begins with "May I have your attention please".

Jul. 24 2012 03:10 PM
MIke from Tribeca

It's hard to choose between the voices of Bloomberg and Quinn.

Jul. 24 2012 02:05 PM
Willi from Brooklyn

The unnecessary alarm of city buses when they "kneel"......I often wonder about the decibel level inflicted upon boarding riders
Is its purpose to warn the persons lying beneath the bus that it is about to be lowerd upon them ?

Jul. 24 2012 01:17 PM
foodaggro from Brooklyn

The high-pitched BEEEP piercing your soul when you swipe through the turnstyle.

Jul. 24 2012 12:00 PM
lilly. from NYC

How about applying the laws and writing the fines? Mayor keeps complaining that the city needs money, and they are just too lazy to fine honkers (300$ a head!) and others. 311 also informs you that it will take them HOURS to ansewer noise complaints. If they fined just few people, I am sure they would spread the word and think twice before honking again

Jul. 24 2012 12:00 PM
Micheal from Manhattan

one thing i notice when I am back home on the Navajo Nation is how quiet it is and also how quietly people speak and listen to things even the TV volumes are turned down to a level that is barely audible ... I think it is because the environment is so quiet that people speak and listen at a lower level

Jul. 24 2012 11:59 AM
Robert from NYC


Jul. 24 2012 11:55 AM
Jeff Pappas from Dumbo

On a construction site A Router, Planer , Jack hammer , Grinder and circular saw etc. I have hearing lose from years of this on my day job. Early on I didnt wear ear protection, now that its too late I wear them
Even if its a room or two away and I am doing something else.
It is also nerve shattering and manic

Jul. 24 2012 11:54 AM
nkh from nyc

People riding dirt bikes down the street in the summertime.

Jul. 24 2012 11:50 AM
NYC resident from Manhattan

#1 = Screeching subway tracks/wheels, especially when trains corner (e.g., going south into Park Place from Chambers St on the #2 and #3 trains)
#2 = Garbage trucks at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday.

Jul. 24 2012 11:46 AM
Ruth from Manhattan

With my earplugs in, I can still hear music coming out of people's earbuds.

Jul. 24 2012 11:46 AM
Ian from Brooklyn from Brooklyn

Freight train airhorns on SUV's are the worst. They should be illegal

Jul. 24 2012 11:45 AM
Krista from Manhattan

The most annoying sound is the high pitched alarm that goes off when you exit the subway station through the emergency exit door.

Jul. 24 2012 11:39 AM
Elizabeth from Brooklyn

There are so many annoying sounds in this city, but two vie for first place:

1) audible gum chewing of all kinds: smacking, cracking, popping....sometimes I just want to hold a mirror in front of the faces of the people making these sounds -- often, they look like camels, and sometimes, they've worked so hard on figuring out how to make just the right crack by contorting their faces into the most vile expressions, I feel that MAYBE if they could see what they looked like making those noises, they might be horrified into stopping.

2) electronic game sounds...from violent gun-shooting games to WORDS WITH FRIENDS, every game HAS to make noises, and many people don't posses the courtesy to mute them. worst of all are the idiots who wear headphones while playing these! not to keep the gaming sounds to themselves, but to listen to something else while forcing the rest of us on the train to listen to their stupid beeps and dings!

Jul. 24 2012 11:21 AM
Sara from Queens. NY

Leaf blowers!

Jul. 24 2012 11:18 AM

Gum is the absolute worst. Is it really that hard to chew it with your mouth closed?

Jul. 24 2012 11:13 AM
Ron from Hudson County

Not so much what as where - noise where one seeks an oasis from the usual sounds of the city, such as in parks. Examples would be helicopters over the harbor, ear splitting bands and electric generators at Governor's Island.

Jul. 24 2012 11:12 AM
Lilly from Midtown West, NYC

We have been living with a ultra high pitch, almost non-stop, BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP sound of construction machines backing up all day long (do they ever do the job going forward?)for 3 years! Calling 311, begging workers to turn it off, calling worker's protection agency and asking why "workers" 5 blocks away have to hear it day and night....nothing helped. With windows closed, A/C on, white noise machine on, and we can stil hear it.

Jul. 24 2012 11:07 AM
Grace from Manhattan

The newsboys/girls in the middle of Penn Station screaming a cacophonous:
As they proceed to shove a "newspaper" in your face, the cries of their compatriots echo throughout Penn Station, creating a din comparable to nails on a chalkboard.

Jul. 24 2012 11:07 AM
Ally from Manhattan

Gum. Definitely gum. Gum smacking is so gross.

Jul. 24 2012 11:06 AM
Rob from williamsburg

ice cream trucks, a constant stream of them on my street in brooklyn-- those jingles are just a little annoying when its for a few min, but when its one after another it becomes totally unbearable.

Jul. 24 2012 11:06 AM
Judi from Hell's Kitchen

Fingernail clipping on the subway or in an otherwise quiet office. Makes my skin crawl!

Jul. 24 2012 11:05 AM
Nancy from Harlem

School buses, trucks and commercial vans backing up. The beeping is WAY TOO LOUD. There is no reason why everyone within 3 blocks of a commercial vehicle in reverse should have to hear it.

Jul. 24 2012 11:03 AM
Robert from NYC

The most annoying noise in NYC is Mike Bloomberg's twangy, whiney voice.

Jul. 24 2012 11:03 AM
Vanessa Watts from Bushwick, Brooklyn

Totally the ice cream truck symphony on my Bushwick block. It begins nighty around 7pm and goes on until as late as 11pm!

Jul. 24 2012 11:03 AM
Jamaica Jones from Jackson Heights

Chris Christie

Jul. 24 2012 11:02 AM
Bernie from UWS

Easy: the emergency exit door alarms in the subway stations. There are always those people who insist on using those doors even when there's no crowd in the station too. Can't you just go through the turnstile like the rest of us and spare us the annoying sound?

Jul. 24 2012 11:01 AM
Kelly Childress from Manhattan

Most annoying sound:
Chomping and snapping gum sitting next to u on subway

Jul. 24 2012 10:38 AM

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