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Missouri To Deploy Ear-Splitting LRAD Sound Cannons To Deter Speeders

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Good news! For people that like speeding in work zones! The Missouri Department of Transportation just acquired two Long Range Acoustic Devices, or LRADs, to blast incredibly loud noises at drivers as they speed past construction sites. This is definitely, definitely going to go over well.

The Missouri DoT plans to blast a high-pitched siren, very loudly, along with warnings to "slow down" to drivers.


The LRAD first came to prominence over the last decade, as it was found to be a non-lethal cureall for riotous crowd control, and also pirate defense. Point an LRAD at someone who finds whatever you're doing disagreeable, fire the sucker up, and suddenly they are blasted with up to 153 decibels of noise.

And how loud is 153 decibels? Well, lets put it this way: a standard-issue firework, if there is such a thing, exploding three feet away from you is slightly quieter. A Boeing 747 taking off right next to your head is much quieter.


Permanent hearing loss begins at 130 decibels.

But don't worry, because the Missouri DoT says that the LRAD will only be used at "safe levels," and it's a "valuable safety tool," according to Before It's News.

This is either a really good idea, because it will help drivers slow down when lives are at risk, or a really, really terrible idea, because blasting an ear-splitting screech suddenly at the driver of a speeding car is a great way for them to think, carefully and with caution, that maybe this is a good time to slow down, maintain car control, and not suddenly veer first to the left, and then wildly over to the right, in a desperate attempt to preserve what little hearing they have left, hoping against hope that they will one day hear the beautiful strings of Beethoven's 3rd symphony again, while they plow directly into the construction zone.

And it will always, surely be used with restraint.

Yes, definitely a good idea.

UPDATE 8/14/2014: Police in the town of Ferguson, Missouri have now been shown on video to be using LRAD sound cannons on peaceful protestors. Their ear-splitting screeches have been shown to be devastating, and horrifying, in this case.


H/t to Ilya!