Bikers Unhappy With Motorcycle Noise Violations
For some, the rumbling of a motorcycle engine is poetic, but for lawmakers in cities nationwide, it's apparently a headache.
Colorado - Noise violation laws targeted at motorcycles that are too loud are just beginning to be enforced nationwide, from New York City to Denver.
In Colorado Springs, similar noise violations are nothing new, as area bikers have been subject to noise violations since 2003.
The violations target motorcycles that have modified mufflers. Bikers say the modifications the violations target are necessary, and offer benefits to the bike, such as better fuel efficiency and increased safety. As a result, bikers feel the violations are having a negative impact on the motorcycle industry.
"It's going to hurt the industry, people not wanting to stay here (Colorado Springs), they're going to go elsewhere," one biker, who wished to remain anonymous says.
The biker says the subject is critical, as many bikers feel the violations are also too strict. Other bikers feel the violations aren't the problems; rather it's the riders.
"It's how you act on your bike," motorcyclist Lanny Pearson of Colorado Springs says. "If you're out here being a fool, you're going to be stopped, if you're out here being calm and sensible, they're going to leave you alone."
According to Colorado Springs noise ordinances, permissible noise levels include anything under 55 decibels in a residential zone or 60 decibels in a commercial zone during the hours of 7:00 AM to 7:00 PM. Those hours are reduced by five decibels during the nighttime hours, from 7:00 PM to 7:00 AM.
To find out what kinds of levels most motorcycles made, NEWSCHANNEL 13 purchased a sound meter for $50.00. Then, we measured the decibel reading of three motorcycles from a distance of 35 feet. Each motorcycle had not been modified and was only idling at the time of measuring the sound levels. After measuring each bike, we compared the results, with each decibel reading over the legal limit in a commercial area.
Still, Colorado Springs Police say they are writing fewer noise violation tickets for all vehicles, including motorcycles. In 2006, police wrote a total of 750 noise violations. So far in 2007, police have written only 245 noise violations.