Traffic Pollution and Health in London

Project Background:

This MRC-PHE centre study lead by Kings College London aims to describe and understand the patterns of exposure of the population in London to traffic pollution (including air and noise) and their relationships to health. The consortium of over 20 investigators has a wide range of work packages. SAHSU related deliverables are to quantify relationships between traffic noise and air pollution and the following health outcomes: mortality, hospital admissions and adverse birth outcomes including low birth weight in the study period 2003-10.

Study Aims:

Air pollution data comes from the Environmental Research Group at Kings College and noise exposures have been modelled at Imperial.  Health outcome data comes from HES maternity, ONS (and NN4B) birth records and ONS mortality records. Address- and postcode-level records are used in order to accurately estimate exposures at residential address.  We also propose (subject to appropriate permissions in place) to link HES maternity and ONS/NN4B birth records to provide ONS birth records with gestation weeks which is important for accurate exposure estimation and outcome interpretation.

Health data:

NHS Digital HES maternity, ONS births, ONS mortality, ONS NN4B

Benefits to Public:

The results of this study will allow for better understanding of the health problems caused by air pollution and noise from traffic in London. Any findings are likely to have a high media-profile and have the potential to influence air pollution policy and regulatory practices in London and the UK.  Output from this work will be disseminated via peer reviewed publication and academic conferences presentations.  The outputs of the project will be published in peer-reviewed journals during the course of the study and after completion, which is expected by 2016.


Fecht D, Hansell AL, Morley D, Dajnak D, Vienneau D, Beevers S Toledano MB, Kelly FJ, Anderson HR, Gulliver J. Spatial and temporal associations of road traffic noise and air pollution in London: Implications for epidemiological studies. Environ Int. 2016 Mar;88:235-42.

Morley DW, de Hoogh K, Fecht D, Fabbri F, Bell M, Goodman PS, Elliott P, Hodgson S,  Hansell AL, Gulliver J. International scale implementation of the CNOSSOS-EU road traffic noise prediction model for epidemiological studies. Environ Pollut. 2015 Nov;206:332-41.

Jaana I Halonen, Anna L Hansell, John Gulliver, David Morley, Marta Blangiardo, Daniela Fecht, Mireille B Toledano, Sean D Beevers, H Ross Anderson, Frank J Kelly, Cathryn Tonne. Road traffic noise is associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality and all-cause mortality in London. European Heart Journal 2015.

Gulliver J, Morley D, Vienneau D, Fabbri F, Bell M, Goodman P, Beevers S, Dajnak D, Fecht D. 2014. Development of an open-source road traffic noise model for exposure assessment. Environmental Modelling & Software. Jan 2015. doi: 10.1016/j.envsoft.2014.12.022.

Halonen JI, Blangiardo M, Toledano M, Fecht D, Gulliver J, Ghosh RE, Anderson RH, Beevers SD, Dajnak D, Kelly FJ, Wilkinson P, Tonne C. Is long -term exposure to traffic pollution associated with mortality? A spatial analysis in London.  Environmental Pollution. July 2015.

Halonen JI, Blangiardo M, Toledano MB, Fecht D, Gulliver J, Anderson HR, Beevers SD, Dajnak D, Kelly FJ, Tonne C. Long-term exposure to traffic pollution and hospital admissions in London. Environ Pollut. 2015 Oct 14. pii:S0269-7491(15)30099-3. doi: 10.1016/j.envpol.2015.09.051. [Epub ahead of print] PubMed PMID: 26476693.

Halonen JI, Hansell AL, Gulliver J, Morley D, Blangiardo M, Fecht D, Toledano MB, Beevers SD, Anderson HR, Kelly FJ, Tonne C. Road traffic noise is associated with increased cardiovascular morbidity and mortality and all-cause mortality in London. Eur Heart J. 2015 Oct 14;36(39):2653-61. doi: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehv216.