Humboldt council has passed a new noise bylaw which judges noise on testable decibels rather than personal perception.
Mike Kwasnica, Humboldt’s director of protective services, said the one change that was made to the bylaw from its first draft was the removal of ATV decibel limits in a residential zone.
“ATVs in a residential area were included in the first draft, but because ATVs aren’t allowed in town by the ATV Act we thought it was pertinent to just remove it,” Kwasnica said.
In residential zones during daytime hours from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., the decibel limit is set at 60 decibels. During the nighttime hours from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m., it’s lowered to 55 decibels.
For all other zones within 30 metres of a residential zone, it’s set at 70 decibels during daytime hours and 65 decibels during nighttime hours.
Commercial and industrial not in 30 metres of a residential zone is set at 85 decibels during the daytime hours, and 75 decibels during the nighttime hours.
Advertisement noises are restricted to the hours between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
The noise levels are judged by a time-weighted average at the property line over 15 minutes.
According to the University of Michigan, a normal conversation is about 60 decibels to the ear, a power lawn mower is between 80 to 89, a shouted conversation is between 90 to 95 and a rock concert is between 120 to 129. A gunshot or siren at 100 feet is 140 decibels.
As per the previous draft, exceptions will continue to be given to municipally approved events, such as car shows or concerts, as well as sudden, necessary infrastructure work.
Jessica R. Durling, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Humboldt Journal