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From a police officer on Revscene

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Noisy Motorcycles

Why don't you do anything about noisy motorcycles? This is a common question when the weather is good and the Harley's are out in force. It's a good question too, why don't the police do anything about this?

The situation puts me in mind of an excessive noise trial I once watched in traffic court. The presiding Justice of the Peace found the driver guilty and commented "You are not a criminal, you are nothing but a social pest!" This is the category that excessively noisy motorcycle owners are in. It is one of nuisance rather than one of safety. Given a choice between the two, the safety related violations must be a priority for enforcement.

Having said that, nuisances must also receive some attention. The Motor Vehicle Act Regulations do help somewhat in this regard. They state that the opinion of an inspector as to whether the engine and exhaust noise is greater than that made by other vehicles in good condition of comparable size, horsepower, piston displacement or compression ratio shall determine whether exhaust gases are expelled with excessive noise. This standard is fairly straight forward, wouldn't you think?

Unfortunately, this is not so. In my experience, a conviction for not having a muffler at all is difficult to obtain, and an unnecessary noise conviction based on the opinion of an inspector is virtually impossible. I have never had a civilian witness available to bolster the opinion, and perhaps that is what is missing for a conviction.

What about noise measurements? The 91 dBA limit for motorcycles must enforceable. Again, there are difficulties with this as well. This standard is for testing in an inspection station, and the police are working at the roadside, without the benefit of a measuring device.

I still try and deal with the loudest of the loud, but the riders know it is unlikely that they will be convicted and often tell me so at the roadside. I don't have the answer to your complaint yet, but I'm working on it.


Note: This column is based on traffic law for the Province of British Columbia current at the time of writing. These laws may be different in other jurisdictions.

Reference links may be found at: http://www.island.net/~cihp/column.html.
 

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SAZABI said:
The 91 dBA limit for motorcycles must enforceable.
I usually don't reply to off-topic threads but this one is a good one. A clear example of what "paper law" means that is virtually not enforced or should I say cannot be enforced. Try telling that to all the enthusiasts of whatever moving motorized object, the exhaust is always if not the most common thing that's replaced first.
 

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I've often wondered about this.
But the specific things I wonder about are a little different:

(1) Do motorcycles HAVE TO be so loud? Would it be hard or expensive to make them quieter?

(2) Assuming that part of it is that the riders LIKE it to be so loud: WHY? :donno:
Don't they know that it rots their eardrums?
Not to mention ours.
 

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well again i will put my meager 2 cents in....

As a former motorcycle rider, i would much rather have a loud exhaust than a quiet one. The motorcycle I had was quiet and not all that loud. I did almost get ran over a couple of times by drivers not paying attention. Taking that, i would much rather have a loud motorcycle for the attention factor (less likely to get ran over).

As far as rotting the ear drums out, you really don't hear the exhaust as much as the people around you do. The exhaust is behind you (for the most part) and you are in front of the sound. Another thought is that the loud motorcycle exhaust is to combat the loud car exhaust/stereo noise ?

Again just my 2 cents worth
 

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johnej said:
.....As a former motorcycle rider, i would much rather have a loud exhaust than a quiet one. The motorcycle I had was quiet and not all that loud. I did almost get ran over a couple of times by drivers not paying attention. Taking that, i would much rather have a loud motorcycle for the attention factor (less likely to get ran over).
I never thought of that! So maybe there is a legitimate reason.
johnej said:
As far as rotting the ear drums out, you really don't hear the exhaust as much as the people around you do......
Charming. :D
 

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same here, weather on my bike or in a car, when i'm quiet no one can hear me and other cars would cut me off or drive rite into me literally at times, that's why i now make my car louder so it's safer when car here me comming up on them... :jeffy:
 

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Cyde said:
same here, weather on my bike or in a car, when i'm quiet no one can hear me and other cars would cut me off or drive rite into me literally at times, that's why i now make my car louder so it's safer when car here me comming up on them... :jeffy:
hee... exhaust??
 
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