SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF/AP) — Windy weekend weather has amplified an annoying sonic feature of the Golden Gate Bridge as high gusts generated by foggy conditions blast into the San Francisco Bay, creating a loud, humming noise that can be heard for miles around.
Frustration has been mounting for nearly a year. Sleep has been disrupted. The constant background hum has become an unwanted way of life in neighborhoods as far away as Daly City.
The Golden Gate Bridge hum is particularly loud tonight. I could hear it in our underground garage, about 3 miles away. https://t.co/7hERHnwfRe
— Kyle Mizokami (@KyleMizokami) May 15, 2021
Last June, crews replaced some 12,000 wide slats on the western side sidewalk safety railing with narrower ones, to give the bridge a slimmer profile and make it safer in high winds.
The hum has been an unwanted sounds effect generated by the change.
“It’s really loud,” San Francisco resident Aneela Brister told the Chronicle. “Huge and all-encompassing. It makes you worry if the bridge is coming apart.”
Now, Golden Gate Bridge spokesman Paolo Cosulich-Schwartz says an engineering group in Canada is working on a fix. The engineers are using full-size sections of the bridge railing inside a wind tunnel.
“We’ll have more to say this summer,” Cosulich-Schwartz told the San Francisco Chronicle. “It’s a tricky business. We want to be absolutely sure we get it right. We will never sacrifice the structural integrity of the bridge but we want to be responsive to our neighbors.”