LONGVIEW — On Tuesday, the University Interscholastic League voted unanimously to send a proposal to the Medical Advisory Board to ban train horns from Texas football games.
Several East Texas schools have train horns, including Longview High School, according to Athletic Director and Head Coach, John King.
"It's one of the loudest I've ever heard," King said.
He said the train horn has been a part of their Friday night tradition for more than 10 years.
"It's just kind of become common place with us running out of the tunnel," King said. "Hear the train horn in the background when we score, make a big play. Win a big game, hear the train horn blow."
He said he understands there could be safety concerns, but he's never heard a complaint about their horn.
According to Pediatrician Anne Whitney, an air horn ranges from 120 to 130 dB, which is the measurement of sound.
She said being exposed to 110 dB for two minutes is enough to cause permanent hearing damage, so an air horn can cause it in just seconds.
"Extremely loud noises like a thunder clap, or an air horn for example, can cause damage to your hearing, essentially immediately," Whitney said.
She said for kids, it's an even bigger concern.
"Young people of course, more of their life is yet ahead of them to live," Whitney said. "So, this damage is cumulative. So, the more loud noises they're exposed to in their life, the higher their risk of having hearing damage."
As far as King is concerned, noise is just a part of the football territory.
"People, they go to be loud and make noise and have fun and support their team," King said.
He said if the ban passes, people will find ways to get around it.
"We've got a great sound system, we could always record a train horn and play the sound."
UIL sent the following statement to CBS19.
"The UIL Legislative Council received a rule change proposal related to train horns during its meeting yesterday. The standing committee on athletics referred the proposal to the UIL Medical Advisory Committee for further consideration. Any recommendations from the Medical Advisory Committee would come back to the Legislative Council before a rule change could be made."
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