[HISTORY: Adopted by the Village Board of the Village of Webster 6-9-1994 by L.L. No. 2-1994. Amendments noted where applicable.]
Excessive sound and noises is a serious hazard to the public health, welfare and safety and the quality of life. It is a finding of the Village Board that unnecessary noise degrades the environment of the Village to a degree which is harmful and detrimental to the health, safety and welfare of its inhabitants; interferes with the comfortable enjoyment of life, property and recreation and with the conduct of business and industry; and causes nuisances. A substantial body of science and technology exists by which excessive sound and noise may be substantially abated. Persons in the Village of Webster have a right to and should be ensured of an environment free from excessive sound and noise.
It is the policy of the Village of Webster to prevent excessive sound and noise that may jeopardize the health, welfare or safety of persons in the Village of Webster or degrade the quality of life in the Village. Further, the provisions hereinafter set forth are in pursuance of and for the purpose of preserving, protecting and promoting the public health, safety and welfare and peace and reasonable quiet for persons in the Village of Webster.
This chapter shall apply to the control of sound or noise originating from stationary and certain mobile sources within the limits of the Village of Webster.
All terminology defined herein which relates to the nature of sound and the mechanical detection and recordation of sound, where applicable, shall conform to the terminology of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) or its successor body.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AIRBORNE SOUND
- Sound that reaches the point of interest by propagation through the air. Approved sound-measuring equipment shall meet ANSI SI.4 1971 standards and is described under the definition of "dB(A)" below.
- AIR COMPRESSOR
- A device which draws in air or gas, compresses it and delivers it at a higher pressure.
- AIR-CONDITIONING AND AIR-HANDLING DEVICE
- Any device that is designed to be used or is actually used to cool, move or condition air, including but not limited to air conditioners, cooling towers, fans and blowers.
- AMBIENT NOISE
- The all-encompassing noise associated with a given environment, being usually composites of sounds from many sources, near and far.
- A-WEIGHTED SOUND LEVEL
- The sound-pressure level in decibels as measured on a sound-level meter using the A-weighing network. The level so read is designated "dB(A)."
- Any activity necessary or incidental to the erection, demolition, assembling, altering, installing or equipping of buildings, public or private highways, roads, premises, parks, utility lines or other property, including but not limited to related activities such as land clearing, grading, earthmoving, excavating, blasting, filling and landscaping.
- CONSTRUCTION DEVICE
- Any powered device or equipment designed and intended for use in construction. Examples of "construction devices" are air compressors, bulldozers, backhoes, trucks, shovels, derricks and cranes.
- CONSTRUCTION SITE
- Any location, including land and water, where construction takes place.
- CONTINUOUS SOUND
- Any sound that is not an impulse sound.
- The abbreviation of "decibel."
- The A-weighted sound level in decibels, as measured by a general purpose sound meter complying with the provision of the American National Standards Institute specifications for sound-level meters, properly calibrated and operated on the A-weighing network.
- The unit for measuring the volume of a sound, based upon the pressure level of a sound. For the purpose of this chapter, the standard reference pressure stated herein will be used to assure a consistent and standard reference for measuring sound. The sound-pressure level measured in "decibels" is equal to 20 times the logarithm to the base 10 of the ration of the effective pressure of the sound measured.
- DISCRETE TONE
- A sound wave whose instantaneous sound pressure varies essentially as a simple sinusoidal function of time.
- (1) The operation or parking of an authorized emergency vehicle when such vehicle is engaged in transporting a sick or injured person, responding to or working or assisting at the scene of an accident, disaster, public call, alarm or fire or any other emergency.
- (2) The work or activity that is necessary to prevent or recover from an emergency, including but not limited to work to repair electric, gas, water, sewerage and/or telephone services.
- EXHAUST SYSTEM
- A system which removes and transports air or gas from a device.
- A function period in time which is the reciprocal of the period and which is measured by the number of oscillations or cycles per second, expressed in hertz (Hz).
- HOMEOWNERS' LIGHT RESIDENTIAL OUTDOOR EQUIPMENT
- All engine- or-motor-powered garden or maintenance tools intended for repetitive use in residential areas, capable of being used by a homeowner. Examples are lawn mowers, garden tools, riding tractors, snowblowers, power shovels and snowplows.
- The abbreviation for "hertz," and is equivalent to cycles per second.
- IMPULSIVE SOUND
- A sound of short duration, usually less than one second, and of high intensity, with an abrupt onset and rapid delay. Examples include an explosion or discharge of a firearm.
- The A-weighted sound level measured with slow response that is exceeded 10% of the time in any one-hour interval. The measurement time interval need not be one hour, provided that the measurement results are representative of a one-hour interval.
- The A-weighted sound level measured with slow response that is exceeded 90% of the time in any one-hour interval. The measurement time interval need not be one hour, provided that the measurement results are representative on a one-hour interval.
- MAXIMUM GROSS WEIGHT
- The weight of the vehicle unladen, plus the weight of the maximum load to be carried by such vehicle during the registration period or the maximum gross weight for which the vehicle is registered, whichever is greater.
- A device for abating the sound of escaping gases of an internal combustion engine or other sound source.
- NOISE-SENSITIVE ZONE
- An area adjacent to a site, including but not limited to any authorized school, church, house of worship, senior citizen center, day-care center, hospital or nursing home, which requires specific noise limitations.
- PAVING BREAKER
- Any powered construction device that is designed to be used or is actually used to cut or trench pavement subbase, macadam, gravel, concrete or hard ground.
- Includes the singular and plural and also any natural person, firm, corporation, political subdivision, government agency, association, club, partnership, society or any other form of association or organization or any legal entity whatsoever.
- PUBLIC HIGHWAY
- Any highway, road street, avenue, public place, public driveway or other public way.
- RECREATIONAL MOTOR VEHICLE
- Any vehicle which is propelled by any power other than muscular power that is designed for or capable of cross-country travel, such as a snowmobile, motorcycle, trail bike or minibike. A "recreational vehicle" is also classed as a motor vehicle when such recreational vehicle is operated or driven upon a public highway. Lawn mowers, powered garden vehicles and other similar utilitarian domestic vehicles are specifically excepted therefrom.
- REFUSE-COLLECTING VEHICLE
- Any motor vehicle designed to compact and transport refuse.
- An oscillation in pressure, stress, particle displacement or other physical parameter in a medium with internal forces (American National Standards Institute terminology).
- SOUND LEVEL
- The weighted pressure level, measured by the use of a metering characteristic and the weighing A, B and C (American National Standards Institute terminology). For purposes of enforcing and interpreting the provisions of this chapter, unless a different frequency weighing is indicated, the A-weighing slow response shall apply.
- SOUND-LEVEL METER
- An instrument, including a microphone, an amplifier, an output meter and frequency-weighing networks, for the measurement of sound levels (American National Standards Institute terminology).
- SOUND-REPRODUCTION DEVICE
- Any device that is designed to be used or is actually used for the production or reproduction of sound, including but not limited to any musical instrument, radio, television, tape recorder, phonograph or any other sound-amplifying equipment.
- SOUND SOURCE
- Any activity or device that produces sound.
- SOUND TRUCK
- Any vehicle having mounted hereon or attached thereto sound-amplifying equipment.
Any act in violation of any of the other provisions of this chapter is also deemed to be in violation of § 85-4 of this chapter. Nothing in this chapter shall be deemed to prohibit the prosecution and conviction of a person on two or more charges which may constitute violations of different sections of this chapter arising out of a single act, occasion or set of circumstances. However, no more than a single penalty may be imposed for each separate and distinct offense.
No person shall make, continue or cause or permit to be made, verbally or mechanically, any unreasonable noise. An "unreasonable noise" shall mean any excessive or unusually loud sound or any sound which creates inconvenience, annoyance, alarm or disturbance and which is publicly offensive or recklessly creates a risk of the foregoing. Standards to be considered in determining whether unreasonable noise exists in a particular situation include the following:
The volume of the noise.
The intensity of the noise.
Whether the nature of the noise is usual or unusual in the context of ordinary human experience.
Whether the origin of the noise is natural or unnatural in the context of ordinary human experience.
The volume and intensity of the background noise, if any.
The proximity of the noise to residential sleeping facilities.
The nature of the zoning district of the area from within which the noise emanates.
The time of day or night the noise occurs.
The time duration of the noise.
Whether the sound source is temporary.
Whether the noise is continuous or impulsive.
The presence of discrete tones.
The following acts and the causing thereof are declared to be in violation of this chapter:
No person shall operate, use or cause or permit to be operated a sound reproduction device that produces unreasonable noise.
No person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated any sound-reproduction device for commercial or business advertising purposes or for the purpose of attracting attention to any performance, show or sale or display of merchandise in connection with any commercial operation, including but not limited to the sale of radios, televisions, phonographs, tape recorders, phonograph records, tapes or compact discs, in front or outside of any building, place or premises, or in or through any aperture of such building, place or premises, abutting on or adjacent to a public street, park or place or in or upon any vehicle operated, standing or being in or on any public street, park or place where the sound therefrom may be heard upon any public street, park or place or from any airplane or other device used for flying over the Village of Webster or anywhere on public streets, parks or places.
No person shall operate, use or cause or permit to be operated or used any sound-reproduction device in any public place on such a manner that the sound emanating therefrom creates unreasonable noise across a real property boundary, subject to the following exceptions:
Bell, chimes or carillons. Nothing herein contained shall preclude or prohibit the use of loudspeakers or other sound amplifying devices to broadcast the sound of bells, chimes or carillons or replicas thereof by a church or other house of worship.
Seasonal music. Nothing herein contained shall preclude or prohibit the reasonable use of loudspeakers in nonresidential-zoned districts of the Village solely to broadcast seasonal music from December 1 through January 1 of the following year, between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m.
Band concerts performed in the Village bandstand.
Sound-signal devices. No person shall operate or cause to be operated any sound-signal device, including but not limited to any Klaxon, horn, whistle, bell, gong, drum or siren, so as to create unreasonable noise, except when and where authorized by New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law.
No person shall operate or cause to be operated any audible burglar alarm or any motor vehicle burglar alarm unless such alarm shall be capable of automatically terminating operation within 15 minutes after such alarm is first activated.
Shouting. No persons shall shout, yell, call, hoot, whistle or sing on public streets or in public places in such a manner as to create unreasonable noise.
Containers and construction material. No person shall load, unload, handle, transport, open, close or destroy any containers or construction material in such a manner as to create unreasonable noise.
Squealing tires. No person shall operate a vehicle in such a manner as to cause unreasonable noise by spinning or squealing the tires of such vehicle.
Exhausts. No person shall cause or permit the discharge onto the open air of exhaust of any device, including but not limited to any steam engine, diesel engine, internal-combustion engine or turbine engine, so as to create unreasonable noise.
Modification of noise-control devices. No person shall operate, cause or permit to be operated any device that has been modified so as to cause the sound emitted to be greater than that emitted by such device as originally manufactured.
Standing motor vehicles.
No person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated any motor vehicle with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) in excess of 10,000 pounds or any auxiliary equipment attached to such vehicle for a period longer than 20 minutes in any hour while the vehicle is stationary, for reasons other than traffic congestion, on a public right-of-way or public space so that the sound therefrom is audible across a residential real property boundary between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day.
This subsection shall not apply to authorized emergency vehicles or to public utility vehicles actually engaged in any emergency operations.
Vehicle or motorboat repairs and testing. No person shall cause or permit the repairing, rebuilding, modifying or testing of any motor vehicle, motorcycle or motorboat in such a manner as to cause unreasonable noise across a residential real property boundary. For purposes of the enforcement of the subsection, "unreasonable noise" means a sound level in excess of 65 dB(A)s when measured at the real property line.
No person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated any recreational vehicle:
On a private property of another without the express prior written consent of the owner and the occupant of said property. Such consent may be revoked at any time by the grantor thereof. Where such express prior written consent has been obtained, the operator or person at the site responsible for such operation shall keep said consent on their person and available for immediate display at all times during the period of such operation.
On any public grounds or property, including town, county, state, federal or school-owned land, which shall include but not be limited to parks, ballparks and recreation areas.
In such a manner as to create unreasonable noise so as to unreasonably disturb or interfere with persons in the peaceful and quiet enjoyment of their property. To this end, no person shall operate a recreational motor vehicle before the hour of 9:00 a.m. and after the hour of 7:00 p.m., prevailing time, or sunset, whichever shall first occur.
In a careless, reckless or negligent manner so as to endanger the safety or property of any person.
Except as provided in Subsection B of this section, no person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated an air-conditioning or air-handling device that exceeds the maximum sound-level limitations provided in this section.
In areas zoned residential, continuous sound in and from said equipment which has crossed the real property line of the property where said equipment or device is located shall not exceed any of the following sound levels:
The provisions of this section shall not apply if the sound from the air-conditioner or air-handling device produces an increase of less than five dB(A)s in the sound level that exists in the absence of such sound.
No person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated an air compressor unless a muffler certified by the manufacturer of such muffler to provide a dynamic insertion loss of not less than 20 dB(A)s of the sound emitted from the exhaust of such compressor is installed on such exhaust.
No person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated a place of public assembly, including but not limited to a restaurant, bar or cafe, in which the sound level is equal to or exceeds 95 dB(A)s for more than 30 seconds at the location of business invitees or which does not meet the levels provided for in §§ 85-11 and 85-12 of this chapter.
No person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated in a zoning district, as defined in the Code of the Village of Webster, Chapter 175, Zoning, any device that produces a sound level exceeding the applicable, permissible limits specified in §§ 85-11 and 85-12 of this chapter. The measurement of any sound or noise shall be made with a sound-level meter using an A-scale decibel level. The measurement shall be conducted at the property line on which such noise is generated or perceived, whichever is appropriate in a residential district, or at the boundary line of the receiving property. For purposes of enforcement of the provisions of this chapter, an enforcement official shall have the right to go onto the real property of the person alleged to be in violation for the limited purpose of obtaining accurate sound-level readings without being liable for trespass therefor.
Except as may otherwise be authorized by the provisions of this chapter:
During the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., no person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated any device which produces a sound level across a residential real property boundary or within any residential zoned district in excess of 65 dB(A)s of an L10 in excess of 50 dB(A)s.
During the hours of 8:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m., no person shall operate, cause or permit to be operated any device which produces a sound level across a residential real property boundary or within any residential zoned district in excess of 55 dB(A)s or an L10 in excess of 50 dB(A)s.
Except as may otherwise be authorized by the provisions of this chapter, no person shall operate or cause or permit to be operated on a sound source site a commercial, business, marine business or industrial operation that produces a sound level exceeding the limitations as provided in Subsections B through D of this section.
Continuous sound in air which has crossed the property line of such sound source site and enters property zoned for residential use or property within a noise-sensitive zone shall not exceed the following levels:
Continuous sound in air which has crossed the property line of the sound source site and enters property which is zoned for business or manufacturing or property where the public in general congregates shall not exceed either of the following levels:
The provisions of this chapter shall be enforced by the same persons and in the same manner as provided for in the Code of the Village of Webster, Chapter 175, Zoning.
The provisions of this chapter shall apply to the use or occupancy of any lot or structure thereon and to noise produced thereby, except the following: