Outdoor noise is becoming a main concern in our communities. Areas zoned for industrial, commercial and residential use are moving closer and closer to one another. This close proximity is resulting in noise complaints between neighbors. Many villages, towns and cities have never had to deal with environmental noise issues until now and are finding the need to tackle this concern by introducing clear, fair and obtainable noise ordinances. The need to educate the community, city officials and building owners concerning the use of environmental noise control products and solutions has become of great importance. One common concern is the noise generated from mechanical equipment servicing the establishments in these areas and how it affects the surrounding residential communities.
As a result, city and state governments are developing noise ordinances. Noise ordinances are laws which limit the allowable noise level(s) at different times of day for different zoned areas (i.e. residential, commercial, industrial). The maximum allowable noise levels are typically higher during daytime hours and lower during nighttime hours. Some noise ordinances can be vague and open for interpretation without specific sound levels noted while others are very specific and call out specific sound levels and daytimes. Many small or rural communities will not have a noise ordinance in place, but in more densely populated areas such as big cities, noise ordinances are an extremely important part of the community’s health.
When there is a violation of a noise ordinance, it is typically reported to the police or other law enforcement agency. This will be followed by a site visit, recording of sound levels and based on the findings, the agency may issue fines and enforce that corrective action be taken by the owner.