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Borough of Catasauqua, PA
Lehigh County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Catasauqua 12-5-1977 by Ord. No. 754 (Ch. V, Part 3, of the 1962 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Animals — See Ch. 105.
Parades — See Ch. 190.
Peddling and soliciting — See Ch. 200.
Vehicles and traffic— See Ch. 260.
The following definitions shall apply to the interpretation of the provisions of this chapter:
A. 
The following:
(1) 
An area where offices, clinics and the facilities needed to serve them are located;
(2) 
An area with local shopping and service establishments;
(3) 
A tourist-oriented area where hotels, motels and gasoline stations are located;
(4) 
A business strip along a main street containing offices, retail businesses and commercial enterprises;
(5) 
Other commercial enterprises and activities which do not involve the manufacturing, processing or fabrication of any commodity.
B. 
Includes, but is not limited to, any parcel of land zoned commercial under the Zoning Ordinance of the Borough.[1]
COMMERCIAL PURPOSE
Includes the use, operation or maintenance of any sound-amplifying equipment for the purpose of advertising any business, any goods or any services, or for the purpose of attracting the attention of the public to, or advertising for or soliciting the patronage of customers to or for any performance, show, entertainment, exhibition or event, or for the purpose of demonstrating any such sound equipment.
CONSTRUCTION ACTIVITIES
Any and all activity incidental to the erection, demolition, assembling, altering, installing or equipping of buildings, structures, roads or appurtenances thereto, including land clearing, grading, excavating and filling.
CONTINUOUS NOISE
A steady, fluctuating, or impulsive noise which exists, essentially without interruption, for a period of 10 minutes or more, with an accumulation of an hour or more over a period of eight hours.
DEVICE
Any mechanism which is intended to produce or which actually produces sound when operated or handled.
DYNAMIC BRAKING DEVICE
A device used primarily on trucks for the conversion of the motor from an internal combustion engine to an air compressor for the purpose of braking without the use of wheel brakes.
EMERGENCY WORK
Work made necessary to restore property to a safe condition following a public calamity or work required to protect persons or property from an imminent exposure to danger or potential danger.
FLUCTUATING NOISE
The sound pressure level of a fluctuating noise which varies more than six dB(A) during the period of observation when measured with the slow meter characteristic of a sound level meter.
INDUSTRIAL DISTRICT
An area in which enterprises and activities which involve the manufacturing, processing or fabrication of any commodity are located. "Industrial district" shall include, but not be limited to, any parcel of land zoned as an industrial district, under the Zoning Ordinance of the Borough.[2]
MOTOR VEHICLE
Any vehicle such as, but not limited to, a passenger vehicle, truck, track-trailer, trailer or semi-trailer propelled or drawn by mechanical power and shall include motorcycles, snowmobiles, mini-bikes, go-carts and any other vehicle which is self-propelled.
RESIDENTIAL DISTRICT
An area of single- or multiple-family dwellings and shall include areas where multiple-unit dwellings, high-rise apartments and high-density residential districts are located. "Residential district" shall also include, but is not limited to, hospitals, nursing homes, homes for the aged, schools, courts and similar institutional facilities.
SOUND LEVEL METER
An instrument or apparatus, including a microphone, an amplifier, an output meter, and weighting networks, for the measurement of sound pressure. The output meter reads sound pressure level when properly calibrated, and the instrument is of Type 2 or better, as specified in the American National Standards Institute Publication S1.4 - 1971.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 280, Zoning.
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 280, Zoning.
It shall be unlawful for any person to willfully make or continue, or cause to be made or continued, any unnecessary noise within the Borough.
A. 
Use restricted. It shall be unlawful for any person to use, operate or permit to be played, any radio receiving set, musical instrument, television, phonograph, drum or other machine or device for the production or reproduction of sound in such a manner as to cause to be made or continued any unnecessary noise as heard without measurement.
B. 
Prima facie violation. The operation of any such set, instrument, television, phonograph, machine or device at any time in such manner as to be plainly audible at either the property line, or 25 feet, in the case of a vehicle on public rights-of-way, shall be prima facie evidence of a violation of this section.
C. 
This section shall not apply to any person who is participating in a school band or in a parade for which a permit has been issued by the Borough, except during the hours of 10:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.
No person shall keep or maintain or permit the keeping of, on any premises owned, occupied or controlled by such person, any animal or bird otherwise permitted to be kept, which by frequent or habitual howling, barking, meowing, squawking, or other noise unreasonably disturbs the peace and quiet of any neighborhood or causes discomfort or annoyance to any person.
No person shall discharge into the open air the exhaust of any steam engine, stationary internal combustion engine, air compressor equipment, motorboat, motor vehicle, or other power device, which is not equipped with an adequate muffler in constant operation and properly maintained to prevent any unnecessary noise, and no such muffler or exhaust system shall be modified or used with a cutoff, bypass or similar device.
Except by permission of the Borough Manager, the Chief of Police, the Mayor and the Public Safety Committee, no person shall load any garbage, trash on compactor truck, or any other truck, whereby the loading, unloading or handling of boxes, crates, equipment or other objects is conducted within a residential district nor within 300 feet of any hotel or motel between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.
A. 
The maximum permissible sound pressure levels of any continuous source of sound shall be as herein established for the time period and district listed in Table A of this section. This includes, but is not limited to, sound from such activities as production, processing, cleaning, servicing, testing, operating or repairing either vehicles, materials, goods, products or devices. Sound pressure levels in excess of those established for the districts of the Borough in times herewith listed, shall constitute prima facie evidence that such sound is an unnecessary noise. Sound pressure levels shall be measured at the approximate location of the property line or the boundary of the public way, at a height of at least four feet above the immediate surrounding surface, on a sound level meter of standard design and operated on the "A" weighting network.
Table A
Sound Pressure Level Limit
dB(A)
District
Day
(7:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.)
Night
(10:00 p.m. - 7:00 a.m.)
Residential
55
50
Commercial
60
55
Industrial, Special Purpose and Airport Commercial
80
75
B. 
When a noise source can be identified and its noise measured, in more than one district, the sound pressure level limits of the most restrictive district shall apply.
C. 
The sound pressure level limits, and provisions hereof, applicable to commercial districts shall also apply to any parcel of land zoned agricultural district under the Zoning Ordinance of the Borough.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 280, Zoning.
D. 
The provisions of this section shall not apply to motor vehicles operating on public rights-of-way; the loading of any tracks; domestic power equipment and commercial power equipment.
[Amended by 5-6-2002 by Ord. No. 1140]
A. 
Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, no person shall engage in, cause or permit any person to be engaged in, construction activities in any residential or commercial district between the hours of 9:00 p.m. of one day and 6:00 a.m. of the following day.
B. 
Construction projects shall be subject to the maximum permissible noise level specified for industrial districts for the periods within which construction is to be completed pursuant to any applicable building permit.
C. 
Construction activities directly connected with the abatement of an emergency are excluded from the provisions of this section.
No person shall operate or permit to be operated on private property or on the public way within any residential or commercial district(s) any power equipment rated five horsepower or less and used for home or building repair or grounds maintenance between the hours of 10:00 p.m. of one day and 6:00 a.m. of the next day or operate or permit to be operated between the hours of 6:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. any such power equipment which emits a noise sound pressure level in excess of eighty decibels in the "A" weighting network dB(A). Such power equipment shall include, but not be limited to, lawn mowers, garden tools, snow removal equipment, electric or chain saws or any other power equipment used fox home or building repair or grounds maintenance. Noise sound pressure levels shall be measured at a distance of 25 feet from the noise source.
No person shall operate on any property within a residential or commercial district or on any public way within a residential or commercial district, any power equipment rated more than live horsepower, excluding construction equipment used for construction activities, such as but not limited to, chain saws, pavement breakers, log chippers, riding tractors, powered hand tools, between the hours of 10:00 p.m. of one day and 7:00 a.m. of the next day or within residential, commercial or industrial noise districts between the hours, of 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m. which emits a noise level in excess of 88 decibels, in the "A" weighting network dB(A). Noise sound pressure levels shall be measured at a distance of 25 feet from the noise source.
[Amended by 5-6-2002 by Ord. No. 1140]
The commercial and noncommercial use of sound amplifying equipment shall be subject to the following regulations:
A. 
Except by the permission of the Borough, sound amplifying equipment shall be operated only between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. of each day.
B. 
The maximum sound emanating from sound amplifying equipment shall not exceed the sound pressure levels established in § 185-1 as measured at least 25 feet from the noise source.
C. 
In any event, the intensity of sound shall be so controlled that it will not be unreasonably loud, raucous, annoying, disturbing or a nuisance to any person or persons.
No person shall sound any horn or signaling device on any truck, automobile, motorcycle, or other vehicle on any street or highway within this municipality, except as a danger warning, and then only for a reasonable period of time.
Noise caused in the performance of emergency work for the immediate safety, health or welfare of the community or individuals of the community, or to restore property to a safe condition following a public calamity shall not be subject to the provisions of this chapter.
[Amended 4-1-2013 by Ord. No. 1288]
Any person, firm or corporation violating any provision of this chapter shall be fined up to $300 and, in default of payment of fine, be imprisoned up to 90 days for each offense; and a separate offense shall be deemed committed on each day during or on which a violation occurs or continues. Any person found guilty of violating an ordinance shall be assessed court costs and reasonable attorneys’ fees incurred by the Borough in the enforcement proceedings.