Over 125 million Europeans are exposed to noise levels above EU guidance, causing at least 10,000 cases of premature death each year, according to the first assessment of the problem by the European Environment Agency (EEA).
Noise pollution causes 43,000 hospital admissions per year and 900,000 cases of hypertension, the agency said on Friday.
The main culprit is road traffic, which is estimated to cause 89% of the resulting premature deaths, due to coronary heart disease and stroke. It is followed by railways, airports and industry.
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