The City That Never Speaks

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A new noise code, effective July 1, will crack down on jackhammers, barking dogs, bar music and ever-prominent vehicle sounds. According to the [Environmental Protection Agency], it is unhealthy for people to be exposed regularly to noise over 75 decibels. City traffic is usually at 85, the subway rings in at about 90 and ambulance sirens blast at 120 decibels.

After 311 dealt with 41,856 complaints in 2006, the authorities have decided to hold bars and clubs to the “plainly audible” standard, meaning that if a law or environmental protection official can [hear noise 15 feet] from the source, they can ticket the establishment.  A first time offence can cost anywhere from $3,200 to $8,000, but may be waived if the bar submits a plan to lessen the noise.

Dog owners will also be shelling out cash if their pooches get too yappy. Under the new regulations, a first time offender can be charged $75 to $175 if the canine barks for more than 10 minutes during the day and more than five at night. Unfortunately, there is currently no offer to waive the charges if you buy your dog a muzzle.

Photo courtesy of [Katie Tegtmeyer on Flickr]

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