A buzz teenagers could do without

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Sir, – I am writing to you with regard to the “mosquito” high-frequency noise devices. I think they are atrocious.

I am 13 years old and live in Dublin. I first heard this age-specific repellent as I was walking into my local convenience store with my Mam. I freaked out because she couldn’t hear this deafening noise – so I thought it was a ringing in my ear. Later that day I went to the same shop with my 13-year-old cousin and heard it again. He could hear it too. I asked my 17-year-old brother if he could hear it and he told me it was a “teenager alarm” and explained its purpose.

I have heard them many times since; outside shops and even some houses – even waiting at a bus stop on O’Connell Street.

I think this is disgraceful. I and every other teenager have a right to walk past a house or a shop without being deafened. We are doing nothing illegal or anti-social – and are often shopping for neighbours and family. I understand they are designed to prevent teenagers loitering around shops or homes but I suggest it is an unnecessary and inappropriate assault on our comfort. If shops and houses audibly attacked adults there would be uproar.

Such teenager-repellents should be prohibited; not only is the sound horrible – but causes ear pain.

A friend and I walked past one of these alarms and both our ears hurt afterwards; my friend has an ear condition and this was especially distressing.

Teenagers are entitled to walk around our community without such a piercing assault on our hearing. – Yours, etc,

NIAMH WARD,

Cabra,

Dublin 7.

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