NYC Considering Plan To Change Emergency Vehicles’ Sirens from “Whoop-Whoop” To “Eeh-Aw”


New York City has been quietly reviewing whether to change the sirens used by emergency vehicles as part of a wider noise pollution reduction effort that’s expected to be announced as early as the fall, the NEW YORK POST reports.

That includes possibly trading in the “whoop-whoop” siren that’s common in many police cars and ambulances for the gentler European rendition that’s more akin to an “Eeh-aw” sound.

“One of the things we need to look at is the way the sirens are set and how they’re used. The actual physical tone of the sirens – it needs to be effective obviously to save lives, but there’s different kinds of sirens around the world that are equally effective and some affront people a lot less,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said on WNYC radio Friday. “We’re looking at that right now.”

Hizzoner’s revelation that he had ordered Deputy Mayor for Operations Laura Anglin to conduct the siren survey and wider noise pollution review came in response to a caller to the mayor’s weekly call-in show. The caller, identified as Bruce, complained that ambulances and police cars stuck in traffic continue to let their sirens wail even when it’s clear they can’t move. Read more at the NEW YORK POST.



  1. Anything to reduce the terribly loud annoying noise that comes from those vehicles, would be greatly appreciated. They are way over the top and so unnecessary. I’ve seen anmbulettes, which are non emergency vehicles who are doing random transports, put on their blaring sirens just to get thru traffic. Terrible.

  2. The private ambulances are always wailing their sirens even if there are no cars in front of them for blocks. It’s just advertising.

  3. @anonymous some state laws require an emergency vehicle to keep sirens on as long as the lights are flashing even if no vehicles are directly in front of them


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