Noise Management

If you live or work in the vicinity of the Thames Estuary coastline, from time to time you may notice when work is being conducted at MOD Shoeburyness. QinetiQ is aware of this and does everything possible to minimise any negative impact on communities in the area whilst continuing to meet the demands of the MOD to deliver critical support to UK Armed Services.

Some of the Range activity that you may notice is when Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) training techniques are being taught to military personnel. The training courses recreate realistic scenarios involving live ammunition and this hands-on experience is vital to completing their skill set. Many of the service personnel trained here are deployed on active service shortly after completing the course. For further information on the work of the DEMS (Defence Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Munitions and Search) Training Regiment, visit the Army website.

In this section you can find out how QinetiQ manages noise emissions from the Range on a daily basis through a strictly controlled process of prediction and monitoring.

Acoustic forecasting

Acoustic Forecasting & Noise Monitoring

QinetiQ operates the Range at Shoeburyness on behalf of the MOD under what is known as the Long Term Partnering Agreement (LTPA). The site is in operation all year round delivering vital test, evaluation and training support for the UK Armed Services. Days when activity may be noticed off site are relatively few.

Meteorological conditions play a very significant part in sound propagation. Shoeburyness uses acoustic forecasting and noise modelling to operate within a strictly controlled noise limit of a maximum of 125dB (decibels) at off site monitors.

Noise is monitored at six stations located around the Thames Estuary (see map). If acoustic forecasting and noise modelling indicates that any work carried out may exceed 125dB, then the activity will be postponed until more favourable conditions allow. For the most part, the noise levels recorded remain well below the limit or are lost in the ambient background noise.

Both QinetiQ and the MOD take this matter very seriously and have made significant investment in the noise monitoring technology used by the Range.

These precautionary measures help to minimise the impact that Range activities may have off site. We do however, recognise the issues that they may cause and apologise for any disruption or inconvenience experienced.

Vibration

From time to time, members of the public express concern that vibration resulting from activity at MOD Shoeburyness is causing damage to their property.

To address this the MOD has comissioned a number of specialist, independent surveys to assess vibration effects and their potential to damage buildings. The most recent of these, conducted by Southdowns Environmental Consultants Limited, during the period June to December 2015, concluded that:

There was no evidence that ground-borne vibration from Range activity was detected at any of the off-site monitoring locations.

It was also concluded that the potential for damage to buildings as a direct result of Range activity, was improbable, based on worst case scenarios, including, for example; the possible effects of the highest permitted level of Range generated noise on older buildings containing large commercial plate glass windows.

The Study acknowledged that secondary airborne vibration may be perceptible in certain conditions but that this will not cause structural damage.

The findings of the latest study were also consistent with those of previous studies conducted by Vibrock Limited.

All of the report documents from the Southdowns Environmental Consultants study are available on .GOV.UK and also here.

Advance Alert Service

QinetiQ is always looking for ways to improve communications between the Range at MOD Shoeburyness and the public and we often receive requests for details of our forthcoming programme. We have responded by introducing an Advance Alert Service which provides advance notice of those activities which may be more noticeable from time to time.

Although we will endeavour to notify you when such activities are scheduled, please note that they are subject to not only the daily acoustic forecast, but also to tide times, weather conditions and operational requirements. Any one, or a combination of these factors may mean that the activity has to be postponed and rescheduled at short notice and it may not always be possible to provide you with an updated schedule of work.

Register for the Alert Service

If you would like to register for the Alert Service, please e-mail your request to QQSHBEnquiries@qinetiq.com. At present this service is only available via e-mail. The e-mail address that you use to send your confirmation will be used as the contact address for future alerts. By providing your email address, you acknowledge you are providing consent to the processing of your personal data by QinetiQ Ltd for the purpose of providing you with advance alert notification of activities on the MOD Shoeburyness range and in accordance with QinetiQ Group Privacy Notice. You can withdraw your consent at any time, to unsubscribe from these alerts, please email rgtalbot@qinetiq.com or kmwilkins@qinetiq.com

Advance information can also be found on this website, click here.

Please note: QinetiQ conducts work at MOD Shoeburyness on behalf of the MOD, under contract with the Secretary of State for Defence. Because of the nature of the work, QinetiQ is limited as to the level and detail of information it can provide in these communications.

Noise and Vibration Monitoring Study

We are pleased to confirm that the final report resulting from the study conducted by Southdowns Environmental Consultants Ltd. has now been published by the MOD. You can view the relevant documents here:

Vol 3 - Technical Appendices Results is available on request. Please email QQSHBEnquiries@qinetiq.com

For further information about the study report, please email QQSHBEnquiries@qinetiq.com

Southdowns Environmental Consultants Ltd has been appointed to undertake a Noise and Vibration Monitoring Study in some of the communities around the Thames Estuary.

QinetiQ Ltd, which operates the Range at Shoeburyness on behalf of the Ministry of Defence (MOD) has, at the request of the MOD, commissioned this independent Study to determine the possible effects of noise and vibration which may result from the test, evaluation and training support activities which are carried out on the Range.

Southdowns is an independent firm of noise and vibration consultants, established in January 1996. As a corporate member of the Association of Noise Consultants, their subject matter experts are affiliated with professional Institutes including the Institute of Acoustics and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

The Study will monitor noise and vibration at multiple locations of interest in the vicinity of the Range. Following a desk top study and site suitability surveys, several locations on the Essex and Kent coastlines have had monitoring systems installed.