Brookhaven, GA, May 28 – After months of fielding complaints from residents who are fed up with not being able to sleep at night due to excessive noise, Brookhaven Officials passed amendments to the City’s noise ordinance at Tuesday’s City Council Meeting in hopes of curing the problem. Officials say most of the complaints from residents involve nightclub noise, parties and thumping music from cars.
While the new amendment does not address construction noise, it does provide the Brookhaven Police Department guidelines for the regulation and enforcement, as well as fines and penalties, and it also explains how sound is to be measured.
According to the new ordinance, sound measurement standards for law enforcement personnel will be made “by auditory senses of a person standing at a distance no less than the required minimum distance from the source of sound.”
While not entirely scientific, this method of measuring noise levels is commonplace in many municipalities in Georgia. If this simple solution to a complex problem gives Police Chief Gary Yandura’s force the means to get the job done and residents can get a good night’s sleep…and there are fewer thumping cars perusing our streets…and the dogs aren’t barking all night long…and the people aren’t outside yelling or hooting or whistling…or the nightclubs aren’t blasting “boots-n-pants” techno tunes ’til the wee hours…or the party animals aren’t howling at the moon at 2 AM…then who’s to criticize the way positive results are achieved.
From a less cynical perspective, sound measuring devices (decibel meters) are in fact known to be hard to use outdoors and ambient noise makes their use troublesome – especially when trying isolate and measure a single sound source. Not to mention, a good decibel meter can be pricey.
The first violation of the noise ordinance comes with a $200 fine. The second violation in 12 months increases to $500, and a third violation within a 24 month period rises to $1,000.
Here is the new amended ordinance. You may want to familiarize yourself with it.