DOVER, N.H. — A group of Granite State citizens have initiated a petition in support of reducing motorcycle noise pollution around the state.
The new law, “An Act To Reduce Motorcycle And Noise Pollution,” NH RSA 266:59-a, introduced by Michele Peckham, R-North Hampton, would repeal the current law that allows a maximum of 106 decibels and replace it with the federal Environmental Protection Agency label law that allows a maximum of 80 dB. Maine passed a similar law last spring, using noise levels approved by the Society of Automotive Engineers as a standard for all motorcycles manufactured after 1982.
“Regular exposure to sound over 100 dB of more than one minute risks permanent hearing loss, according to the National Institute on Deafness of the National Institute of Health,” Mitchell said. “And may be implicated in heart disease and hypertension.”
The act would apply to motorcycles manufactured after January 2013. Enforcement and compliance would be accomplished through the required annual inspection rather than by expensive and time-consuming police checkpoints.
The online petition has so far received more than 120 signatures from both New Hampshire and out-of-state residents.
“As residents of New Hampshire, we are constantly subject to the excessive noise generated from motorcycles and vehicles which have been modified with exhaust systems purely for the purpose of making noise,” reads the petition. “They are a nuisance, a public disturbance and they detract from the overall quality of life in our state.”
Larry Deal of Hickory, N.C., wrote in support of the law, saying although he supports the New Hampshire petition, he would like a federal law regulating the noise levels.
“This problem is not unique to New Hampshire. It is widespread all over the country,” he said. “The more states that recognize and enforce the federal law, the easier it will be for the other states to follow suit.”
With his signature on the online petition, Holderness resident Philip Inwood also wrote he believes police and fire officials appear to be ignoring the existing laws. He said there needs to be a stronger approach to reducing the “noise terrorism.”
Area residents also signed the petition, saying the noise levels are upsetting.
“As part owner of a property on Route 1A, I am disturbed by the constant noise of motorcycles outside my window, day and night, all summer long,” said North Hampton resident Charles Sullivan.
The petition, created by the New Hampshire Citizens Against Loud Motorcycles, can be found at www.ipetitions.com/petition/nhcalm.
(c)2011 the Foster’s Daily Democrat (Dover, N.H.)
This story was corrected Sept. 19 to indicate that noise levels in the Maine statute were based on standards used by the Society of Automotive Engineers.
Distributed by MCT Information Services