VIRGINIA: FAIRFAX COUNTY ENACTS NOISE CONTROL LAW SETTING SOUND LIMITS FOR MOTOR VEHICLES, QUIET HOURS

A Fairfax County, Va., noise ordinance that specifies maximum sound limits for motor vehicles and prohibits certain loud noises during night hours was adopted Sept. 8 by the county's board of supervisors. Under the rules which will be effective January 1, 1976, a motorcycle traveling at less than 35 mph is limited to 82 dBA; over 35 mph, 86 dBA. Maximums for automobiles are 76 and 82 dBA; for trucks, 86 and 90dBA. The noise limits conform to the Environmental Protection Agency standard for vehicles over 10,000 pounds. Outdoor activities prohibited under the new law are: operating a loudspeaker after 11 p.m. or before 7 a.m.; operating construction or demolition equipment between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m.; repairing automobiles between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m.; operating powered models, such as model airplanes or automobiles, between 9 p.m. and 7 a.m.; and loading or unloading trucks, including trash trucks, after 9 p.m. and before 6 a.m. The board of supervisors is authorized to establish "quite zones" and specify noise levels in them. The noise ordinance also specifies maximum sound of 55 dBA for residential areas, 60 dBA for commercial zones, and 72 dBA for industrial areas. It requires the operator of a loudspeaker system that exceeds 90 dBA indoors to post a sign warning that prolonged exposure to the sound may impair hearing. Exemptions are provided in the noise ordinance for emergency vehicles and equipment, and variance procedures are specified.

  • Corporate Authors:

    Bureau of National Affairs, Incorporated

    1231 25th Street, NW
    Washington, DC  USA  20037
  • Publication Date: 1975-9-15

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00126295
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 18 1975 12:00AM