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This article was published 19/4/2019 (409 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
By Drew May
A resident living near Richmond Avenue is frustrated with loud cars and motorcycles outside his house and wants to see the city crack down harder on noisy drivers.
"There’s motorcycles and trucks with straight pipes on and motorcycles," said Rick Hamilton, who lives on Durum Drive. "They race up and down Richmond (Avenue)."
He moved back to Brandon three years ago from Edmonton, which is when he started to really notice the issue.
Even with his windows closed, he says he can still hear loud engines from inside his home. The problem is worse when he’s outside.
"I sit on the balcony, and I’m sitting out there reading, and these guys go smoking by."
The cars are loudest between 26th Street and 34th Street on Richmond Avenue, he said.
Hamilton would like to see the city enact tougher bylaws on loud engines, including setting a decibel limit for how loud cars can be. The City of Edmonton defines the maximum level of a sound a vehicle can make in its noise bylaw as 96 decibels measured 50 cm from the exhaust outlet.
Coun. Shawn Berry (Linden Lanes) said it’s not a simple fix and amending the noise bylaw wouldn’t automatically fix the problem.
"We have vehicle noises and other noises in this city constantly, it’s called spring-summer construction season and living in a city."
The City of Brandon has consulted with Edmonton police, Berry said, and have been told it’s a very difficult bylaw to enforce.
"Unless you can tell (police) the description of that car, a licence plate number and a time that it happened I can’t do a thing as a police officer. That being said, if I do and cite the driver or a sound muffler, how do I prove it was loud?"
While the police in Edmonton have purchased noise-testing devices for traffic enforcement, Berry said Brandon Police Service has neither the devices nor the budget to purchase them.
"We have too many other things that we need to deal with. ... We’ve already spent a lot of time and resources on this. ... But how much money, time and resources do we want to spend on a problem that we are probably never going to be able to solve?"
Berry said he also very rarely gets complaints from people about loud vehicles, and that while he understands the problem and can hear loud mufflers from his home near Richmond Drive, there are more pressing issues for Brandon police to deal with.
Brandon Police Service Const. Myran Hamm said the police service only issued two tickets for loud vehicles under the Highway Traffic Act in 2018, both in July.
The Manitoba Highway Traffic Act says: "No person shall start, drive, turn or stop a motor vehicle, or accelerate the motor of a motor vehicle while it is stationary, in such a manner as to cause any loud and unnecessary noise in, or from, the engine, exhaust system or braking system, or from the contact of tires with the roadway."
Hamm said tickets for noise are mostly driven by complaints from the people who hear them, but police may issue one if they see someone squealing their tires or revving their engine.
» Twitter: @DrewMay_