Township of Abington, PA
Montgomery County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Abington 7-10-1975 by Ord. No. 1405, effective 9-1-1975. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Animals — See Ch. 58.
Loitering — See Ch. 104.
Nuisances — See Ch. 108.
Sound equipment — See Ch. 140.

§ 106-1 Legislative declaration.

A. 
Pursuant to the authorization of Section 1502 of The First Class Township Code,[1] for the purpose of securing and promoting the public health, comfort, convenience, safety, welfare and the peace and quiet of the Township of Abington and its residents, the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Abington has found:
(1) 
The making and creation of loud, unnecessary and unusual noises within the limits of the township is a condition which has existed for some time and the extent and volume of such noises is increasing.
(2) 
The making, creation and maintenance of loud, unnecessary or unusual noises which are prolonged, unusual or unnatural in their time, place or use does affect and is a detriment to the public health, comfort, convenience, safety, repose, welfare or prosperity of the residents and persons within the township.
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 § 55101 et seq.
B. 
The necessity in the public interest for the provisions and prohibitions hereinafter contained and enacted is declared as a matter of legislative determination and public policy, and it is further declared that the provisions and prohibitions hereinafter contained and enacted are in pursuance of and for the purpose of securing and promoting the public health, comfort, convenience, safety, repose, welfare and prosperity and the peace and quiet of the Township of Abington and its inhabitants and persons within its limits.

§ 106-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
DECIBEL (DB)
A unit of level which denotes the ratio between two quantities which are proportional to power; the number of "decibels" corresponding to the ratio of two amounts of power is 10 times the logarithm to the base 10 of this ratio.
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 imminent exposure to danger.
PERSON
Includes the singular and the plural and also means and includes any person, owner, tenant, firm, corporation, association, club, partnership, society or any other form of association.
SOUND-LEVEL METER
An instrument including a microphone, an amplifier, an output meter and frequency weighting networks for the measurement of noise and sound levels in a specified manner.

§ 106-3 Prohibited acts.

A. 
It shall be unlawful for any person to make, continue or cause to be made or continued any loud, unnecessary or unusual noise which either annoys, disturbs, injures or endangers the comfort, repose, health, peace or safety of others within the Township of Abington limits.
B. 
No person shall sound any horn or any signaling device on any automobile, motorcycle, motor bicycle or other vehicle in any street or public place of the township except as a danger warning signal.
C. 
No person shall operate any motor vehicle or motorcycle in the township, licensed or unlicensed, on public or private premises, whether standing or moving, without an appropriate muffling device on the exhaust system of said vehicle in order to prevent any unnecessary and unreasonably loud or harsh sound.
D. 
No person shall use, operate or permit to be played any radio receiving set, musical instrument, television, phonograph, public-address system or other machine or device for producing or reproducing sound in such a manner as to disturb the peace, quiet and comfort of neighboring inhabitants. The operation of any such instrument in such a manner as to be plainly audible at a distance of 50 feet from the building, structure or vehicle in which it is located is prohibited.
E. 
No person shall use, operate or permit to be played, used or operated any sound-amplifying machine for the producing or reproducing of sound which is cast upon the public streets for the purpose of advertising except by permit in accordance with Ordinance No. 814 of the Township of Abington.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 140, Sound Equipment.
F. 
No person shall yell, shout, hoot, whistle or sing on the public streets nor at any time or place so as to annoy or disturb the quiet, comfort or repose of persons in any building or of any persons in the vicinity.
G. 
No person shall keep any animal or bird which causes frequent or long-continued noise which disturbs the comfort or repose of any person in the vicinity.
H. 
The erection, including excavation, demolition, alteration, construction or repair, of any building other than between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m., except for emergency work, as defined in § 106-2, is prohibited.
I. 
No person shall create any excessive noise on any street adjacent to any school, institution of learning, church, hospital or other public building, while the same are in use, which unreasonably interferes with the workings of such institution or which disturbs or unduly annoys the pupils, churchgoers, patients or others inside said building.
J. 
No peddler, hawker or vendor shall shout or otherwise cry his wares which disturbs the peace and quiet of the neighborhood.
K. 
It shall be unlawful for any person in the operation of any machinery, commercial motor vehicle unit on a truck, any equipment, pump, snowplow, snowblower, lawn mower, leaf blower, chain saw or similar mechanical device, to use such instrument or equipment in such a manner or with such volume as to annoy or disturb the quiet, comfort or repose of any person or persons in any dwelling, apartment or other type of residence on any day of the week. This subsection shall not apply to municipal vehicles used for emergency work, such as but not limited to snow removal.
L. 
Air-conditioning and other mechanical equipment.
(1) 
It shall be unlawful for any person in the operation of any air-conditioning equipment or part thereof or any other type of mechanical equipment or apparatus installed or attached to premises, to make, continue to make or cause to be made excessive noise so as to cause annoyance, inconvenience or detriment to the public or any person or persons. Noise shall be considered excessive if the sound level from the air-conditioning unit or any other type of mechanical equipment or apparatus installed or attached to premises exceeds 55 decibels in recreation-conservation and residence districts under the Zoning Ordinance of the Township of Abington, 70 decibels in PI Planned Industrial Districts under the Zoning Ordinance of the Township of Abington, and 60 decibels in all other classes of zoning districts under the Zoning Ordinance of the Township of Abington.[2]
(a) 
Exception. Permanently installed emergency generators, used for the sole purpose of supplying electrical power to dwelling units within the residential zoning districts of the Township of Abington may operate at a decibel level not to exceed 75 decibels, measured at the closest property line. The maintenance cycle for permanently installed emergency generators must occur between the hours of 9:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., weekdays. Permanently installed emergency generators are prohibited from being installed in a front yard setback area.
[Added 11-8-2012 by Ord. No. 2031]
[2]
Editor's Note: See Ch. 162, Zoning.
(2) 
If, as the result of a test, the air-conditioning equipment, mechanical equipment or apparatus installed on or attached to premises is found to violate the terms of this chapter, the operation of said equipment or apparatus shall be discontinued immediately. The Abington Health Department shall be empowered to grant an extension of time not exceeding 30 days in order to bring equipment into compliance.
M. 
No person shall operate or cause to be operated any recreational motorized vehicle off a public right-of-way in such a manner that the sound level therefrom exceeds 73 decibels at a distance of 50 feet or more from the path of the vehicle when operated on a public space or at or across the boundary of private property when operated on private property. This section shall apply to all recreational motorized vehicles, whether or not duly licensed and registered, including but not limited to commercial and noncommercial racing vehicles, motorcycles, minicycles, go-carts, snowmobiles, campers and dune buggies.

§ 106-4 Enforcement.

A. 
It shall be the duty of the Abington Health Department and the Abington Police Department and members of those Departments to enforce the provisions of this chapter, and they are hereby given the power and authority to do so.
B. 
The measurement of sound or noise shall be made with a sound-level meter meeting the standards prescribed by the American Standards Association. The instrument shall be maintained in calibration and good working order. A check for calibration of the system shall be made at the time of any noise measurement. Measurements shall be recorded so as to provide a proper representation of the noise source. The microphone during measurement shall be positioned so as not to create any unnatural enhancement or diminution of the measured noise. A windscreen for the microphone shall be used when required. Traffic, aircraft and other transportation noise sources and other background noises shall not be considered in taking measurements, except where such background noise interferes with the primary noise being measured. The slow-meter response of the sound-level meter shall be made at the property line of the property on which such noise is generated or perceived as appropriate, five feet above the ground. In case of an elevated or directional sound or noise source, compliance is to be maintained at any elevation at the boundary.

§ 106-5 Violations and penalties.

Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof by any District Justice, be sentenced to pay a fine of not less than $10 nor more than $300, together with the costs of prosecution. Each day a violation exists shall constitute a separate offense. In default of payment of any fine, the defendant may be sentenced and committed to the township lockup for a period not exceeding five days or to the county jail for a period not exceeding 30 days.