Florida Noise Law?

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Tenzing_Norgay
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Florida Noise Law?

Post by Tenzing_Norgay »

Does FL have a noise/loud exhaust law? I've moved to a home near a busy road and it's been overwhelming listening to the bro-dozers and boy racers in their belly-button cars with what sounds like open exhaust. Not sure if there is a law or not, but it seems to be a new trend.

I guess I'm just getting old... :?

P.S. - Get off my lawn.

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lakelandman
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Post by lakelandman »

https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/sound ... story.html
As transient as Florida’s population is, many of you likely moved here from another state. And if you did, you may notice that those safety and emissions inspections you had to get done elsewhere are nonexistent here.

But that doesn’t mean you’re free to drive a buzzsaw-loud car that isn’t safe for the roads.

As part of our Sound Off South Florida project, in which we answer questions from readers, we received a query from Molly Gordon, who wrote, “I recently moved here from another state. Why are there no muffler laws or sound ordinance laws for loud vehicles (both motorcycles and cars)? Or do laws exist, and they aren’t enforced?”

First off, yes, Molly, Florida does have state laws regulating motor vehicle noise. Specifically, Florida Statute 316.293, which requires motorcycles to have a decibel level of 78 or lower at 35 mph or less, and 82 decibels at over that speed. The decibel levels are weighted to account for how loud these sounds are to the human ear in what is known as “A weighting.” For cars, the levels are 72 decibels and 79 decibels under or over 35 mph.

There are some exceptions, such as those for emergency vehicles, race cars and construction vehicles on job sites, but in general, legally speaking, you can’t just go roaring around Florida in something that sounds like a jet engine.

But here’s where we get into a problem. In some other states, regulations require periodic vehicle safety inspections that usually include a test of exhaust noise. In Florida, we don’t require regular inspections.

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Florida Gov. Bob Graham did away with mandatory vehicle inspections back in 1981, saying that the $20 million spent on the program could be better spent on law enforcement. Just a few years later, a report by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles showed that since Florida abolished its annual inspection program in 1981, the number of accidents in which police reported vehicle defects grew by 14 percent.

The end of the program meant that, rather than be proactive about safety and noise, Florida became reactive, depending on law enforcement officers to stop vehicles if they believed the vehicles were unsafe.

Florida was an early adopter of this way of looking at vehicle safety. Other states have followed suit, including Mississippi as recently as 2015. Today, according to the American Automobile Association, only 15 states require annual or biennial vehicle safety inspections. Some others require them only for commercial vehicles or only at the time a vehicle is purchased, transferred or brought into the state. Including Florida, 29 states require no safety inspections.

Aside from safety inspections, many states also require an emissions test. Florida doesn’t do that either, along with 16 other states, most of them largely rural. In states that require emissions tests, the tests are often limited to the most populous counties or cities in the state. That was the way it was in Florida until 2000, when emissions testing was ended under Gov. Jeb Bush in the six counties that required it, which included Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade.

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“Preliminary approval by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has confirmed that emissions testing is not necessary to maintain air quality standards in all the Florida counties they have reviewed,” Bush said at the time.

These days, it’s up to you, the driver, to keep your car in working order and under the noise level mandated by law. If you don’t, you can be ticketed by police, though minor safety issues are often let off with a warning to get them fixed.

According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, police in Broward County issued 174 citations for vehicle noise violations in 2018. That includes citations from Florida Highway Patrol, the Broward Sheriff’s Office and city police departments. Another 5,123 citations were issued for driving with unsafe equipment. That specifically means equipment on the car was defective or unsafe given road conditions — violations such as drivers not wearing a seat belt or motorcyclists not wearing a helmet are a different category. (Although, it’s worth mentioning that with the right insurance, motorcyclists in Florida don’t have to wear helmets.)

In Palm Beach County, law enforcement issued 112 noise citations and 3,197 unsafe equipment citations. And in Miami-Dade County, law enforcement gave out 252 tickets for vehicle noise and 19,005 for defective equipment or improper equipment in unsafe conditions. In most cases, these tickets were dismissed in court.
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Cubanstang50
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Post by Cubanstang50 »

You can get a ticket for too loud, specially if the radio is to loud. The main reason they can use that, is cause you wouldnt be able to hear emergency services trying to get by.

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macattack321
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Post by macattack321 »

Cubanstang50 wrote:
Fri Nov 22, 2019 11:03 pm
You can get a ticket for too loud, specially if the radio is to loud. The main reason they can use that, is cause you wouldnt be able to hear emergency services trying to get by.
That law officially died in 2012... http://politics.heraldtribune.com/2012/ ... itutional/

P5 Guy
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Post by P5 Guy »

Loud pipes save lives! Let the exhaust flow free! :D

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Tenzing_Norgay
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Post by Tenzing_Norgay »

P5 Guy wrote:
Sat Nov 23, 2019 2:12 pm
Loud pipes save lives!
No they don't... :roll:

TC6969
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Post by TC6969 »

P5 Guy wrote:
Sat Nov 23, 2019 2:12 pm
Loud pipes save lives! Let the exhaust flow free! Hey everybody look at ME! :D
You forgot the rest of your poem! :lol:

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BIG JOE
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Post by BIG JOE »

Ever since the governors motorhome could not pass inspection the inspection program disappeared real fast. LEO can write a ticket, but most likely
will not. We are all getting old. Good luck.
BIG JOE

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Jeepsnguns
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Post by Jeepsnguns »

Tenzing_Norgay wrote:
Fri Nov 22, 2019 9:10 pm
I guess I'm just getting old... :?

P.S. - Get off my lawn.
Yeah, I'm there with you, welcome to my world!

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Jeepsnguns
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Post by Jeepsnguns »

macattack321 wrote:
Fri Nov 22, 2019 11:40 pm
Cubanstang50 wrote:
Fri Nov 22, 2019 11:03 pm
You can get a ticket for too loud, specially if the radio is to loud. The main reason they can use that, is cause you wouldnt be able to hear emergency services trying to get by.
That law officially died in 2012... http://politics.heraldtribune.com/2012/ ... itutional/
It may just be my imagination, but it seems to me there has been an actual DECREASE in the noise level of car speakers blasting rap here in Bradenton/Sarasota since the noise ordinance law was overturned a few years ago.
Almost as if now thats it's not illegal it's not as much fun ????

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