January 1, 2006
Noise Free America
For immediate release
Madison: The All-Terrain Vehicles (ATV) industry has won this month’s “Noisy Dozen” award from Noise Free America for turning America’s countryside into a buzzing cacophony of noise. These irritating dirt bikes guarantee that no place in the United States is safe from ingratiating sound.
Tony Bernando, from a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio, owns a .75 acre parcel of land. His next-door neighbor, with an acre of land, gave ATVs to each of his four sons. Bernando states, “Two of these vehicles run at any given time and they can get up to speeds of about 30 miles per hour. When they rev the engines it is unbearable, as are the fumes. I spoke with the neighbors and they will stop if we are having an outdoor event and ask them to do so. Otherwise, it’s every day for hours in the summer. I have called the police, but they say it is OK for people to use ATVs on their own property as long as it is not after dark. I cannot believe we are zoned for such a living, since this is not a rural community, and I cannot believe it does not violate noise ordinances even for daytime hours. I am sick of dealing with the noise, exhaust fumes, and dirt from these vehicles.”
Noise Free America’s director, Ted Rueter, commented that “most people move to the suburbs and the countryside to avoid the noise of the city. People buy large plots of land to avoid noise from their neighbors. Unfortunately, due to the greed of companies such as Yamaha and Suzuki, Americans no longer have the right to peace and quiet. Many ATVs hit an ear-splitting 104 decibels. That is physically dangerous and incredibly irritating. And the problem is growing. One out of thirty residents of Pennsylvania now own an ATV.”
An anonymous posting on the web site of “Pennsylvania ATV” reprimands dirt bike riders for their enthusiastic embrace of noise, because “we need to quit making the general public mad at us over noise. If we really love to ride and want to protect our sport, we need to do everything we can to reduce noise well below the legal limits. We need to make friends, not enemies, and all we really get from noise is more enemies. Well, except a few companies making significant money selling socially irresponsible products for big bucks. And can anybody give me a believable reason why a 4-stroke exhaust system, with a simple head pipe and a simple can muffler, costs twice as much, or more, than a 2-stroke system? Let’s back the programs that brought the noise levels down before.”
Noise Free America is a national citizens group opposed to noise pollution. Past “winners” of the award include Pioneer Electronics, Flowmaster, and the Specialty Equipment Market Association.