Some residents of a western Brooklyn neighborhood say that they’ve been hearing a mysterious sound, intermittently, at various times of the day, for months now. They say that they want help from the city to figure out what it is and to allow them to get a quiet night’s sleep.
“[It’s] like a ‘woo-woo-woo-woo!'” said Mo Hussain, a five-year resident of the Fort Greene neighborhood. “It almost sounds unnatural. It really gets under your skin.”
Hussain is an active member of groups on apps including Nextdoor and WhatsApp that trade video, recordings, complaint records and other information about the sound and its effects.
“You feel like your teeth are about to fall out, your window panes might shatter,” Hussain said. “It’s really an unnatural sound, and it’s unnerving.”
Dawn Luisa, who’s lived in Fort Greene for three years, said that she’s heard the sound at random times off and on for over a year.
“It sounds like a tuning fork. It’s really annoying,” she said at first, but then added, “It sounds like a headache.”
It can go on for a short while, or for up to a half hour, according to residents. Luisa said that the time of day doesn’t matter.
“Just when you think, ‘Oh it’s gone,'” she said, “Then you’re like, ‘Wait, do you hear that? Oh I hear that.'”
“It’s also problematic,” she continued, “because it’s so eerie sounding, and so it’s difficult to ignore.”
Hussain elaborated on how the intermittent nature of the sound affects his household.
“I’m the father of a 9-year-old boy,” he explained. “Sometimes, it kicks up right at bedtime … just enough to prevent him from going to sleep.”
Fort Greene has seen more new construction in recent years than almost any other part of the city. Local residents suspect that the sound may be related to one or more construction projects, but they say that they’re just not sure.
Hussain said that they’re looking to the city to help solve the mystery. He said that various members of the community groups of which he’s a part have been sending emails, filling out web forms, calling 311, and otherwise complaining to the city, in the hope of getting some answers.
When they do, he said, “It’s kind of, ‘Tough luck, can’t help you without more information.’ So it’s frustrating for us.”
Residents’ complaints have been referred to the New York City Department of Environmental Protection.
A spokesperson for the Department of Environmental Protection told PIX11 News that it has scheduled an appointment for next week to meet with one of the local residents who’ve called 311, and will do an inspection.