Fox35 (Orlando, Florida)

January 5, 2008

ORLANDO, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35) — In 2005, our legislators cracked down on loud music systems in cars, allowing officers to write tickets if they can hear music from at least 25 feet away. Minimum fines can be around 70 dollars, but one national anti noise group wants to get tougher. Penalties could include increased fines or even suspension of driver’s license.

Christopher Prince loves his bass. He has spent about seven thousand dollars on a booming stereo system. “I want the system that I’m excited about. I like turning it up and getting a response from people.”

And boy does he get a response. He says younger kids egg him on to turn it up, while the older crowd isn’t so kind.

Christopher says he has received a handful of tickets, but it hasn’t stopped him from lowering the bass. “It’s still money but 70, 80 bucks doesn’t compare to what I put in the car. It’s not like I’m going to stop, because I’m going get a 70, 80 dollar ticket. That’s not enough for me.”

That’s the kind of attitude that has turned the ears of Noise-free America. “It isn’t the loudness. It’s the vibrations. Those subwoofer vibrations, and low frequency vibrations,” says spokesperson Judy Ellis. “We all know that it’s bad for your ears, any exposure to decibels over 90 begins deafening process,” she says, adding, “Emergency workers, EMT, fire … their sirens are not being heard at intersections.”

Judy says this problem needs to be addressed before it gets any worse, which is why the organization is proposing stricter measures. “We want 200 dollars [fine], and we want two points off the license,” Ellis says. “If we can get two points off the license, then we can get the insurance companies into it. If you don’t give them a fine, that’s not uncomfortable enough. They’re just going go back and do it again.”

In a few weeks, Judy, along with others from Noise-free America, will meet with various members of the senate transportation committee to try and get someone to sponsor their legislation.