Village of Village of The Branch, NY
Suffolk County
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[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Trustees of the Village of the Branch as Ch. 55 of the 1973 Code; amended in its entirety at the time of adoption of Code (See Ch. 1, General Provisions, Art. I). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
As used in this chapter, the following words and phrases shall be defined as set forth below:
AMBIENT SOUND
An all-encompassing composite of sounds from many sources associated with a given environment.
AUDIBLE
That which can be heard by a person of normal hearing ability.
A-WEIGHTED SOUND LEVEL
The sound pressure level as measured in decibels on a sound level meter using the A-weighting network slow response (dBA).
COMMERCIAL PROPERTY
Any property currently or hereinafter not zoned as residential property.
CONSTRUCTION
Any site preparation, assembly, erection, repair, alteration or similar action, but excluding demolition, of buildings or structures.
CONTINUOUS SOUND
Any sound that is not an impulsive sound.
dBA
The A-weighted sound level in decibels, as measured by a general-purpose sound level meter complying with the provisions of the American National Standards Institute Specifications for Sound Level Meters (ANSI SI.4 1971), properly calibrated and operated on the A-weighting network.
DECIBEL
A unit for measuring the pressure level of a sound, equal to 1/10 of a bel.
EMERGENCY WORK
Any work or action necessary to deliver essential services, including, but not limited to, repairing water, gas, electricity, telephone and sewer facilities and public transportation, removing fallen trees on public rights-of-way and abating life-threatening conditions.
IMPULSIVE SOUND
A sound characterized by brief excursions of peak sound pressure which significantly exceed the ambient sound.
A. 
Any sound that:
(1) 
Disturbs a reasonable person of normal sensitivities.
(2) 
Is audible outside the real property boundary from which it originates and is loud, disturbing, unreasonable and/or unnecessary under the circumstances, as well as plainly audible in any other person's residence and the source of sound is discernible regardless of whether doors and windows are closed.
B. 
A noise disturbance may be substantiated by either of the following:
(1) 
Sworn affidavits from two or more residents who are in general agreement as to the times and durations of the noise and who reside in separate residences.
(2) 
A noise in excess of the maximum permissible A-weighted sound levels as determined by a qualified technician using a sound level device and reported on a form approved by the Smithtown Public Safety Department.
PEAK SOUND PRESSURE
The maximum absolute value of the instantaneous sound pressure level during a specified time interval.
PERSON
Any firm, partnership, corporation, association or individual.
PUBLIC RIGHT-OF-WAY
Any street, avenue, boulevard, road, highway, sidewalk, alley or similar place that is owned or controlled by a governmental entity.
PUBLIC SPACE
Any real property or structures therein that are owned or controlled by a governmental entity.
A. 
The imaginary line, including its vertical extension, that separates one parcel of real property from another; or
B. 
The vertical and horizontal boundaries of a dwelling unit that is in a multidwelling building.
RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY
Any property used for human habitation.
SOUND
Any variation in ambient barometric pressure.
SOUND DEVICE OR APPARATUS
Any radio device or apparatus or any device or apparatus for the amplification of sounds from any radio, phonograph or other sound-making or sound-producing device or any device or apparatus for the reproduction or amplification of the human voice or other sounds.
SOUND PRESSURE LEVEL
When measured in decibels, equal to 20 times the logarithm to the base 10 of the ratio of the effective pressure of the sound measured to the standard reference pressure of a sound.
SOUND SOURCE
Any person, animal, device, operation, process, activity, or phenomenon which emits or causes sound.
STANDARD REFERENCE PRESSURE OF A SOUND
Twenty micronewtons per square foot.
No person shall cause, suffer, allow or permit to be made verbally, electronically, or mechanically any noise disturbance.
A. 
No person shall cause, suffer, allow or permit the following acts:
(1) 
Sound device or apparatus: operating, playing or permitting the operation or playing of any sound device or apparatus as defined in § 180-1 in such a manner as to create a noise disturbance; or the operation of any such device between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. in such a manner as to be audible at a distance of 50 feet from the building, structure, vehicle or area in which it is located.
(2) 
Animals and birds: owning, possessing or harboring any animal or bird that frequently or for continued duration makes sounds that create a noise disturbance across a residential real property line. For the purpose of this subsection, a "noise disturbance from an animal or bird" shall be defined as the making of any sound which is audible across a real property line for 15 minutes in any one-hour interval.
(3) 
Motor vehicle repairs and testing: repairing, rebuilding, modifying or testing any motor or engine in such a manner as to exceed any applicable limit in Table I[1] across a residential area property line.
[1]
Editor's Note: Table I is included as an attachment to this chapter.
(4) 
Construction: operating or permitting the operation of any tools or equipment used in construction, drilling, earthmoving, excavating or demolition work between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m. the following day on weekdays or at any time on weekends or legal holidays, except for:
(a) 
Emergency work;
(b) 
When the sound level does not exceed any applicable limit specified in Table I;
(c) 
When it is the result of the operation of any said equipment by or for any municipal agency.
(5) 
Horns and signaling devices: the sounding of any horn, signaling device or alarm (except as in danger warning pursuant to § 375 of the Vehicle and Traffic Code of the State of New York) which results in a harsh or loud sound or repetitive sounds for any unreasonable or unnecessary period of time so as to create a noise disturbance.
(6) 
Shouting and yelling: shouting, yelling, singing, calling, hooting or whistling so as to create a noise disturbance.
(7) 
Construction or repairing of buildings and incidental areas: any construction, excavation, demolition, alteration or repair which creates a noise disturbance, except between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on weekdays and except in cases of emergency or in the interest of public safety.
(8) 
Institutional buildings: the creation of any noise disturbance on any street adjacent to any school, place of worship, court, or hospital, while same is in use, which unreasonably interferes with the workings of such institution or which disturbs or unreasonably annoys occupants, visitors or employees of such institutions, provided that conspicuous signs are displayed in such streets indicating that the same is a school, hospital, court, or place of worship.
(9) 
Peddlers and vendors: the shouting of peddlers and vendors which disturbs the peace and quiet of the neighborhood so as to create a noise disturbance.
(10) 
Domestic equipment: the operation of or permitting to be operated any power saw, drill, sander, router, lawn or garden device, leaf or snow blower, insect control device or domestic equipment so as to create a noise disturbance, except between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 8:00 PM on weekdays and weekends, and except in cases of emergency or in the interest of public safety.
(11) 
Sound device or apparatus: operating, playing or permitting the operation or playing of any sound device or apparatus, including, but not limited to, loudspeakers, speaker systems, outdoor public address systems, or any device for the production or reproduction of sound, in such a manner so as to create a noise disturbance.
(12) 
Explosives, firearms, fireworks and similar devices: the use or firing of explosives, firearms, fireworks or similar devices so as to create a noise disturbance, except as permitted by any other federal, state, county or local law.
(13) 
Generators: the use of a generator when there is no power outage caused by a storm or other emergency, except for routine testing.
(14) 
Trash collection: the collection of trash between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.
A. 
No person shall cause, suffer, allow or permit the operation of any source of sound on a particular category of property or any public lands or right-of-way in such a manner as to create a sound level that exceeds the particular sound level limits set forth in Table I[1] when measured at or within the real property line of the receiving property, except those acts specifically prohibited in § 180-2 of this chapter for which no measurement of sound is required.
[1]
Editor's Note: Table I is included as an attachment to this chapter.
B. 
The following are exempt from the A-weighted sound pressure level limits of Table I:
(1) 
The noise of domestic power tools, lawn mowers and agricultural equipment, when operated with a muffler during permitted hours designated in § 180-2A(10), provided that they produce less than 70 dBA at any real property line of a residential property.
(2) 
The sound from church bells and church chimes when a part of a religious observance or service.
(3) 
The noise from construction activity, except as provided in § 180-2A(4).
(4) 
The noise from snowblowers, snow throwers and snowplows, when operated with a muffler, for the purpose of snow removal.
(5) 
The noise from a burglar alarm of any building or motor vehicle, provided that such burglar alarm shall terminate its operation within 15 minutes after it has been activated and shall not operate more than 15 minutes in any one-hour period.
It shall be unlawful for any person to use or operate or cause to be used or operated any sound device or apparatus in, on, near or adjacent to any public street, park or place for commercial or business advertising purposes.
The provisions of this chapter shall not apply to:
A. 
The emission of sound for the purpose of alerting persons to the existence of an emergency or the creation of sound in the performance of emergency work, including, but not limited to, fire alarms and whistles.
B. 
Noise from noncommercial public speaking and public assembly activities conducted on any public space or public right-of-way.
C. 
Noise from municipally sponsored celebrations or events.
Any person who shall violate any of the provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of an offense, and such violation shall be punishable by a fine of up to $250 for the first offense, not less than $500 for the second offense, and not less than $1,000 for the third and subsequent offenses or imprisonment of not more than 15 days, or both.