Tire noise is one of the primary sources of highway noise, particularly at high speeds. Different types of road surfaces generate different noise levels. Noise data were collected on eight different surface types found in Kentucky. Noise measurements were made using a reference car, and noise recordings were obtained from the traffic stream. A reference truck was used for one test. It was found that portland cement concrete; Class I, Type A and A(Modified) bituminous concrete; chip seals; and open-graded, plant-mix seals were more or less "normal" surfaces in regard to generated noise. Sand-asphalt and Kentucky rock asphalt surfaces were about 3 dBA quieter (cars) than "normal" surfaces. Grooved portland cement concrete surfaces were approximately 4 dBA louder (cars) than "normal" surfaces. The surface type did not affect the noise emitted by trucks.

Report Date


Report Number

No. 417

Digital Object Identifier



The contents of this report reflect the views of the authors who are responsible for the facts and the accuracy of the data presented herein. The contents do not necessarily reflect the official views or policies of the Bureau of Highways. This report does not constitute a standard, specification, or regulation.