Good Question: Are there any efforts to stop loud vehicles?
Editor’s Note: This version of the SLEEP Act was passed by both the Assembly and the Senate.
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC)—We’ve all heard a really loud motorcycle, car, or truck go racing by our homes at some point.
So what can the police do about it? What does the law say about keeping things quiet in your neighborhood?
Steve sent News10NBC’s Brennan Somers this message: I guess I am sick of hearing jerk’s noisy vehicles in my living room. I also find it hard to believe the state would allow inspection stations to put stickers as a "passed" vehicle on some of the prime noise makers both motorcycle, truck, and the cars I have had the annoyance of listening to. Is there any effort made to curb this?
The quick answer to that is yes.
"We have all been terrorized by this type of behavior," Downstate Democratic Senator Andrew Gournardes said at a recent event.
He was speaking about a bill named the Stop Loud and Excessive Exhaust Pollution (SLEEP) Act. His point, along with supporters, is current law needs more teeth for enforcement.
"It is already illegal to engage in drag racing on our streets and we need tools to enforce it," Sen. Gournardes added. "It is already illegal to modify your car and add a jet engine onto your Mazda so it sounds like Kennedy airport at 10 a.m. on a Sunday morning."
There are rules in place for drivers making off-market modifications for souped-up vehicles.
The max fine currently is $150 for illegal, noisy exhaust systems. Lawmakers pushing this say that’s not enough to really stop someone.
So this new measure would raise the maximum fine to $1,000.
On top of that, any inspection station or repair shop caught for violations related to illegal mufflers and exhaust setups could have their license suspended or taken away.
Lawmakers have also looked at requiring all police and deputy cruisers to have decibel readers installed. They haven’t got to that point yet.
So how does it work now?
Somers spoke with RPD. Officers with the traffic division in Rochester don’t use or even have decibel meters. They go off training and their own hearing to make that call if your exhaust causes an "excessive or unusual noise" as explained under state law.