Township of Marple, PA
Delaware County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Marple 11-12-1979 by Ord. No. 79-15 (Ch. 56 of the 1971 Code). Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Animals — See Ch. 95.
Building construction — See Ch. 108.
Explosives — See Ch. 129.
Fireworks, firearms and weapons — See Ch. 139.
Vehicles and traffic — See Ch. 285.

§ 185-1 Title.

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Noise Control Ordinance."

§ 185-2 Chapter designation.

This chapter shall be designated as Chapter 185 of the Code of the Township of Marple.

§ 185-3 Policy.

Whereas excessive noise is detrimental to the health, comfort, living conditions, welfare and safety of the citizens of the Township of Marple, it is hereby declared to be the policy of the Township of Marple to safeguard the citizens of the township from noise pollution.

§ 185-4 Definitions.

The following words, terms and phrases, when used in this chapter, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, shall have the following meanings respectively ascribed to them:
A-WEIGHTED SOUND LEVEL
The sound pressure in decibels as measured on a sound level meter using the A-weighted network and read as "dBA."
IMPULSIVE SOUND
Sounds of short duration, usually less than one second, with an abrupt onset and rapid decay.
NOISE DISTURBANCE
Any sound which:
A. 
Endangers or injures the safety or health of humans;
B. 
Annoys or disturbs a reasonable person of normal sensitivities;
C. 
Endangers or injures personal property; or
D. 
Exceeds the maximum permissible sound levels set forth in the regulations.
PERSON
Any individual, partnership, association, syndicate, company, firm, trust, corporation or other entity recognized by law as the subject of rights and duties, including any governmental agency.
REAL PROPERTY BOUNDARY
An imaginary line along the ground surface, and its vertical extension, which separates the real property owned by one person from that owned by another person, but not including intrabuilding real property divisions.
SOUND LEVEL
The weighted sound pressure level obtained by the use of a sound-level meter with an A-weighting frequency network as specified in American National Standards Institute specifications for sound-level meters (ANSI S1. 4-1971 or the latest approved revision thereof). All terminology not defined here shall be in conformance with applicable publications of the American National Standards Institute or its successor body.

§ 185-5 Noise Control Officer.

A. 
Authorized position. The Code Enforcement Officers, police officers and other persons as may be designated by the Board of Commissioners, shall serve as Noise Control Officers.
B. 
Duties. Noise Control Officers shall have the powers and duties to:
(1) 
Enforce the provisions of this chapter and the rules and regulations contained herein.
(2) 
Receive and initiate complaints of violations of the regulations of this chapter.
(3) 
Upon presentation of proper credentials, enter and inspect any private property or place and inspect any report or records at any reasonable time when granted permission by the owner or by some other person with apparent authority to act for the owner. When permission is refused or cannot be obtained, a search warrant may be obtained from a court of competent jurisdiction upon showing of probable cause to believe that a violation of this chapter may exist. Such inspection may include administration of any necessary tests.
(4) 
Send written notice of any violation of this chapter to the person responsible for the violation.
(5) 
Institute prosecution for violation of the regulations of this chapter.

§ 185-6 Regulations.

A. 
No person shall unreasonably make, continue or cause to be made or continued any noise disturbance:
(1) 
Across a real property boundary or between adjacent units of a multiple-family dwelling, except for activities open to the public and for which a permit has been issued by a Noise Control Officer.
(2) 
At a distance extending more than 50 feet from a noise-producing device, when operated in or on a motor vehicle on a public right-of-way or public space.
B. 
No person shall make, continue or cause to be made or continued any noise disturbance between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. the following day when the noise produced is associated with:
(1) 
The operation of an instrument, sound amplifier or similar device which reproduces, produces or amplifies sound.
(2) 
The loading, unloading, opening, closing or other handling of boxes, crates, containers, building materials, garbage cans or similar objects.
(3) 
Operating or permitting the operation of any tools or equipment used in construction, drilling, demolition work or home maintenance.
(4) 
The operation of powered model vehicles, motorboats, domestic power tools and other motor-driven apparatus; repairing, rebuilding, modifying or testing any motor-operated vehicle, motorcycle, powered model vehicle, motor-driven apparatus or power tool.
(5) 
The operation of an electronic insect device which emits unreasonable noises.
[Added 11-13-1984 by Ord. No. 84-21]
C. 
No person shall operate or cause to be operated on private property any source of sound in such a manner that creates a sound level greater than the limits set forth for the receiving land use category specified below when measured at the real property boundary of the property on which the source of the sound is located.
(1) 
Table.
Maximum Cumulative Time Allowed at Sound Level
Limit in Any 24-Hour Period
Land Use Category
Residential, Apartment,
Public Space, Institutional
Commercial,
Business,
Sound Level
Limit
(dBA)
Day
(7:00 a.m. to
11:00 p.m.)
Night
(11:00 p.m.
to 7:00 a.m.)
Shopping
Center
Day and Night
Less than or equal to 50
16 hrs.
8 hrs.
24 hrs.
55
16 hrs.
4 hrs. 30 min.
24 hrs.
60
7 hrs. 30 min.
1 hr. 0 min.
24 hrs.
65
1 hr. 30 min.
30 min.
12 hrs.
70
45 min.
5 min.
2 hrs. 30 min.
75
9 min.
3 min.
1 hr. 0 min.
80
5 min.
1 min.
15 min.
85
1 min.
0 min.
7 min.
Greater than or equal to 90
0 min.
0 min.
1 min.
(2) 
For any source which emits a pure tone sound, the maximum time of operation will be for the next lower sound (dBA) level in the above table.
[Amended 11-13-1984 by Ord. No. 84-21]
D. 
Plans for construction and operation of new bus routes, railroads, trolleys or roads or expansion of such existing transportation systems, regardless of the source of project funds, shall comply with applicable state or federal noise control standards. If there is reason to believe that these plans are not consistent with this chapter, the department or agency responsible will be requested to consider the advisability of revising the plans to make them more consistent with this chapter.

§ 185-7 Violations and penalties.

A. 
Prosecutions under this chapter shall be instituted by the Noise Control Officer and shall be prosecuted in the name of the Township of Marple. Any person violating any of the provisions of this chapter shall, upon conviction thereof, be punishable by a fine of not more than $1,000, plus costs of prosecution, and in default of payment of such fine and costs by imprisonment for not more than 30 days. Each day that a violation exists shall constitute a separate offense.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Amended at time of adoption of Code (see Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I).
B. 
The Noise Control Officer may institute an action in equity for an injunction to restrain continuous violations of this chapter in the event that the Noise Control Officer has issued an abatement notice which is being violated and which is not then the subject of judicial review.