KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The University of Tennessee has revealed just how loud Neyland Stadium got during Saturday’s iconic game between the Tennessee Vols and the Alabama Crimson Tide.
According to Tennessee Athletics, the stadium hit 125.4 decibels.
“Thunder goes off right above your head, that booming sensation, that can approach around 120, 125,” said Dr. James Lewis, who works for the UT Health Science Center. “Being right next to a chainsaw while it’s operating and then being very, very close to sirens. Ambulance, fire engine, police sirens.”
It’s clear that “Neyland Loud” isn’t just a phrase. Instead, it is a tactic that can produce positive and negative effects for both fans and athletes.
“Exposure to 120, 125 dB, even for several seconds are potentially hazardous to your ear,” explained Lewis. “It does seem to have an impact on the mental state, which is understandable. It’s very loud, it’s difficult to concentrate and know what’s going on.”
But just how much damage can 125.4 decibels cause?
“You can begin to destroy cells, you can begin to damage neurons even after just several seconds of that type of exposure,” Lewis told News 2’s sister station, WATE.
As the Vols continue their winning streak, Lewis encourages fans dedicated to being in the stands for every game to consider taking precautions.
“You know those foam earbuds you can buy at pretty much any pharmacy? Coming to the game with a few sets of those. Earmuffs that go over your ears as well. A little bit easier to place. You’ll still be able to hear just fine because the levels are so loud,” Lewis said.
WATE staff members have also seen several posts on social media of people saying they could hear the game, the fans, and the fireworks from across town. One social media user even described watching the game inside and then running outside for every touchdown to hear the band and fans.
The undefeated Vols will follow up their historic win against Alabama with a homecoming game against UT Martin this weekend. The game is set for noon on Saturday. You can watch it on SEC Network.