Deafening blare of departure

The ultimate alarm clock

This comment was first published in the Whitehorse Leader.

I am only 20 years old, but at this rate I will be deaf by 30.

It’s not because I listen to loud music or because I stay out too late at parties. Rather, it has more to do with the Belgrave/Lilydale-bound trains that regularly leave Nunawading station.

Why does the train driver need to blurt out the siren with such gusto whenever the train departs? With the only station exit situated at the tip of the train’s nose, passengers are left with no choice but to endure this daily alarm.

I’m not the only one unimpressed by Metro’s frequent noise pollution; whenever the siren goes off, fellow commuters share their pain.

Some swear, while others jump in shock. Most of us, meanwhile, try to brace ourselves; “it’s coming,” we remind ourselves, before cringing with terror as the horn strikes again.
I understand that Metro needs to look after the safety of its passengers. But don’t the guard rails and security cameras do a sufficient job?

If the train driver wants to communicate their message, surely a mild precautionary warning is just as effective as an offensive honk?

Train travel can be painful enough; we don’t all need ear aches to go with it.