Several years ago I helped push through an ordinance that updated our noise laws.
Our Brock, Clay and Calhoun attorney, Ray Buday, did an excellent, well research job of putting together an ordinance that addressed the major sources of noise. These included noises from car radios, house parties and such. In fact the Georgia Municipal Association(GMA) put the Ordinance on their web site as an ideal law that other cities could use.
Unfortunately the part on loud car stereos has not been enforced. The past police chief told me that it was difficult because offenders would turn off their radios when they saw a police car coming. I told him that he could use my driveway and hear the cars coming blocks away. And their is a curve so the cars could not see the PD cars.
I think that this has been an issue that most citizens would like to see addressed. Persons have no right to disturb the peace. Additionally, there is also a danger here to the drivers and others. Let me give you a personal account of how dangerous this is for everyone when a driver leaves their radios "up".
Some years ago I was called to jury duty. The case was the prosecution of an ambulance driver who struck a car containing two teen aged girls. Cobb County alleged that the ambulance was driving two fast. The car in question had simply made a left hand turn right in the path of the ambulance. One girl was killed and the passenger was hurt.
During our deliberations it came out that the teen was guilty of not getting out of the way of an emergency vehicle had she survived. But something else came out.
A witness said that the car had its stereo way "up". Thus they likely did not hear the ambulance coming. Now we all know how loud those emergency vehicles can be. This was the main reason that we all voted the ambulance driver "not guilty".
This is not the end of the story. After the trial we found out that the ambulance was going to a heart attack victim. They never made it because of the crash and neither did the victim.
This is a very sad case for everyone. But you can ask yourself what would have happened had these teens simply had their radio down to a reasonable level.
But this is part of the story that happens everyday, somewhere. Driving experts are constantly telling us that there are far to many distracted drivers as is.
Others call this noise pollution that hurts in other ways as well. Audiologist warn that hearing impairments are rising from especially younger persons. Higher blood pressure is associated with loud noise.
I guess few might want to argue about something like loud train horns. But reasonable persons can see that those are safety measures and are in fact mandated by a federal agency, the FRA.
There is no way that anyone can say that these loud radios serve any useful purpose.
Thanks for reading and I am always pleased to hear from you,
Thomas D. Bevirt