The role of messaging on acceptability of military aircraft sounds in Sequoia National Park
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Opportunities to experience natural sounds are among the most important reasons for visiting parks, and mandates require that the National Park Service protect natural soundscapes. Due to its proximity to military installations, military aircraft are prevalent above Sequoia National Park, and exposure to sounds produced by aircraft have been found to detract from visitor experiences. Military overflights and associated acoustic impacts are likely to continue given Sequoia's relationship with these agencies, and proximity to military installations, and in turn visitor experiences may be depreciated. This study examined whether educational messaging could significantly affect Sequoia visitor acceptability of military aircraft sounds, and evaluated the strengths and limitations of visitor communication strategies as they pertain to soundscape management. Results determined that informing visitors about the presence of military aircraft through a theoretically-derived message could improve acceptability of military aircraft sounds by as much as 15%. These results indicate that educational messaging may offer immediate benefits to Sequoia visitor experiences. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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