Township of Upper Providence, PA
Delaware County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
GENERAL REFERENCES
Air pollution control — See Ch. 610.
Animals — See Ch. 614.
Construction and repair of streets and sidewalks — See Ch. 1020.
Solid waste collection — See Ch. 1062.
Recycling — See Ch. 1066.
[Ord. No. 8, passed 6-14-1946]
No person shall throw or deposit wastepaper, sweepings, ashes, household waste, nails, rubbish of any kind or debris in or on the streets or roads of the Township.
[Ord. No. 8, passed 6-14-1946]
No person shall haul or carry wastepaper, sweepings, ashes, household waste, nails, rubbish of any kind or debris in a truck, wagon, cart or other vehicle that is not covered by a tarpaulin in such manner as to prevent the contents from being blown in any form upon the streets and highways of the Township.
[Ord. No. 36, passed 3-3-1953]
No person shall dump, keep or suffer to remain on his, her or its premises, or on any private property, including any vacant lots, any garbage, rubbish, waste or waste materials or any other offensive or unwholesome matter, or cast the same upon any vacant lot or piece of ground within the Township, or on any highway, street or alley, or upon the shores or margin of any stream within the Township or so near the limits thereof as to annoy or be offensive to anyone.
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Section 680.04, Open burning, was repealed 3-12-1998 by Ord. No. 317. For current provisions on open burning, see Ch. 610, Air Pollution Control.
[Ord. No. 447, passed 9-10-2009]
(a) 
Purpose. The purpose of this section is to ensure that public health, safety and welfare shall not be abridged by the making and creating of noise pollution, dust pollution or of public nuisances from disturbing, excessive or offensive noises and dust in the Township. The residents of the Township recognize that uncontrolled noise and dust represents a danger to the health and welfare of their neighbors and that each person in the community is entitled to live in an environment in which the level of impulsive and amplified noise is minimized and dust is minimized for the community good. It is the purpose and scope of this section to provide regulations defining the maximum sound levels and dust that vehicles, appliances and equipment shall be allowed to produce at specified distances from these devices, and also to provide for the prohibition of all kinds of offensive noises and dust. These regulations and prohibitions are intended to protect the physical, mental and social well-being of the residents of the Township.
(b) 
Legislative findings. The Township Council finds that failure of individuals, businesses, industries, persons maintaining animals, social gatherings and other activities to regulate noise and dust emanating from their premises constitutes a violation of the peace and enjoyment of the residents of the Township and a public nuisance. Specifically, such noise and dust emanating from home occupations, businesses, industries, sound amplification equipment, radios, electronic sound recording equipment, vehicles, persons maintaining animals, social gatherings and other activities:
(1) 
Creates a nuisance in that residents are deprived of the enjoyment of their homes, disturbed in their sleep, and otherwise prevented from the quiet enjoyment of their residential premises;
(2) 
Affects the property values of residences in the Township;
(3) 
Affects the public welfare by reflecting negatively on the quality of life in residential areas of the Township;
(4) 
Disturbs the peace and good order of the Township; and
(5) 
Creates noise and dust pollution.
(c) 
Definitions. The following words and phrases, when used in this section, shall have, unless the context clearly indicates otherwise, the meanings given to them in this subsection.
(1) 
ALL ACOUSTICAL TERMINOLOGY — Shall be interpreted in accordance with that contained in ANSI S1.1, "acoustical terminology". All other words and terms not defined herein shall be used with a meaning of standard usage.
(2) 
ANSI — Is the American National Standards Institute, or its successors.
(3) 
DECIBEL (dB) — Is a unit of sound level which is a division of a logarithmic scale used to express the ratio of sound pressure of the source to the pressure of an arbitrarily chosen reference pressure; the ratio is expressed on the decibel scale by multiplying its "base 10 logarithm" by 20.
(4) 
EXCESSIVE NOISE — Is that sound which is injurious or which unreasonably interferes with the comfortable enjoyment of life and property; and annoying to a person of ordinary sensibilities. Measured noise levels in excess of limits established in these regulations or those specified in valid permits are declared to be excessive noise.
(5) 
NIGHT TIME — Is 10:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. prevailing time, conversely, "day time" is 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m., prevailing time.
(6) 
NOISE — Means any sound emitted by a person, animal, appliance, equipment, instrument or other device.
(7) 
NOISE LEVEL — Means airborne sound levels expressed in dB and obtained by the use of specific frequency dependent weighting networks, as specified in the referenced standards and indicated by proper notation; if all weighting is employed, the sound level is identified as dB(A).
(8) 
NOISE POLLUTION — Is noise of such loudness and character from a single source or from multiple sources, which is or may be predicted with reasonable certainty to be injurious to health or which unreasonably interferes with the enjoyment of property or with any lawful business or activity. Noise/sound pressure levels exceeding those permitted in any district shall constitute "noise pollution".
(9) 
PERSON — Includes an individual, firm, association, organization, partnership, trust, company, corporation or any other similar entity.
(10) 
SOUND LEVEL — Means noise level.
(11) 
SOUND LEVEL METER — Is an instrument or combination of instruments which meets or exceeds the requirements for an ANSI Type SIA or Type S2A Sound Level Meter.
(12) 
TOWNSHIP — Is the Township of Upper Providence, Delaware County, Pennsylvania.
(13) 
VEHICLE — Means any device, or combination of devices, used for or capable of being used for transporting persons or property.
(14) 
VEHICLES — Include, but are not limited to the following: automobiles, trucks, buses, motorcycles, motorized bicycles, snowmobiles, scooters, all-terrain vehicles, go-carts, racers and like devices, farm machinery, industrial machinery, highway graders, trailers, graders and semi-trailers.
(d) 
Noise limit. No person shall create or allow the creation of any noise or operate or cause to be operated a source of sound on property owned, leased, occupied or otherwise controlled by such person, which causes the sound level, when measured at or beyond any boundary of the lot, parcel, tract or property, on which such activities take place, where such noise is either objectionable to a reasonable person of normal sensitivities or where such noise exceeds the noise levels specified below:
(1) 
Sixty decibels (dB(A)) between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 p.m., prevailing time.
(2) 
Fifty decibels (dB(A)) between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., prevailing time.
(3) 
If the ambient sound level in an area of a noise disturbance exceeds the applicable noise limit levels set forth in this subsection, then the applicable noise limit set forth in this subsection shall be the ambient sound level plus five decibels. In no event shall the noise limit exceed 75 decibels.
(4) 
No person shall operate or cause to be operated a motor vehicle or motorcycle, or any equipment attached to such vehicle, on a public right-of-way at any time or in such a manner that the sound level emitted from said motor vehicle and/or motorcycle exceeds the minimal set forth in 67 Pa. Code, Chapter 157, "Established Sound Levels".
(e) 
Exemptions. Noise emitted from the following sources shall be exempt from the noise standards specified herein:
(1) 
All safety signals and warning devices (e.g. intrusion alarms, back-up alarms on trucks); authorized vehicles when responding to emergencies (e.g., police, fire, ambulance sirens or any other device used to alert persons to an emergency or used during the conduct of emergency work).
(2) 
The provision, repair, and maintenance of municipal services or public utilities.
(3) 
Bells, chimes and carillons used for religious purposes or in conjunction with national celebrations or public holidays.
(4) 
Appliances, lawn and garden equipment, chain saws, snow removal equipment and power tools in use between the hours of 7:00 a.m. (prevailing time) and 9:00 p.m. (prevailing time) provided such are operated within the manufacturer's specifications and with all standard noise reducing equipment in use, unmodified, and in proper operating condition.
(5) 
Construction equipment when being used on a construction project or development for which the operator or land owner has obtained all required Township approvals (such as permits, zoning approvals and/or subdivision and land development approvals) in use between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., prevailing time, provided that such equipment is being used within the manufacturer specifications and with all standard noise-reducing equipment in use, unmodified and in proper operating condition.
(6) 
Air conditioners, fans, heating units and similar comfort devices, provided such are operated within the manufacturer's specifications and with all standard noise reducing equipment in use, unmodified, and in proper operating condition.
(7) 
Musical, recreational and athletic events conducted by or permitted by schools, local government, community or community association or village festivals, or events sponsored by non-profit organizations.
(8) 
Activities authorized by waiver granted by the Township Council, pursuant to all conditions imposed by Township Council in the grant thereof which may include limitations on the duration of such activity and/or the noise emanating from such activity.
(9) 
All farm related operations and activities.
(10) 
Any existing legitimate or licensed business, commercial or industrial operation between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 9:00 p.m., prevailing time, provided any appliances, equipment, machinery or devices used in such operation are operated within the manufacturer's specifications and with all standard noise-reducing equipment in use, unmodified and in proper operating condition.
(f) 
Special waiver. A request for a special waiver from the noise standards specified herein shall be submitted to Township Council prior to the requested activity. If, however, an emergency exists, the request for special waiver shall be made to Township Council by 12:00 noon the next business day following said emergency.
(g) 
Policy. It is the policy of the Township Council in adopting this section not to force any industrial or commercial enterprise out of business, but rather to work with any industrial or commercial enterprise to find ways to reduce noise levels to the level permitted by this section.
(h) 
Outdoor activities. All terrain vehicles, dirt bikes, motorcycles and other motorized recreational vehicles.
(1) 
All residents and/or operators of vehicles designated herein must obtain a no cost permit in order to operate said vehicle on their property. A permit must be obtained for each motor vehicle. A copy of the permit will be maintained at the Township building identifying the owner/operator and describing the vehicle.
(2) 
Residents may operate permitted vehicles on their property in compliance with this section. No more than two vehicles may be operated on a resident's property at one time.
(3) 
Subject to compliance with all other applicable laws, ordinances and regulations, residents may operate the above-referenced vehicles on their property in compliance with this section, however, they may not drive on to a contiguous property, driveway, yard or acreage without the consent of the owner of said contiguous property, driveway, yard or acreage.
(4) 
An operator must operate the vehicle in a manner that does not create measurable dust. Measurable dust is the accumulation of dust, debris or haze that can be seen with the naked eye. Resident/operator may not produce dust clouds capable of rolling onto a neighbor's property.
(5) 
An individual may operate the above-referenced vehicles during daytime only. However, if a neighboring resident submits a reasonable complaint about the noise, dust or manner of use to the Police Department, which use, noise, dust or manner of use is objectionable to a reasonable person of normal sensitivities, then the operator must discontinue use in such a manner.
(6) 
Nothing herein shall be construed in a manner so as to prohibit an individual from lawfully operating a motorcycle or other motor vehicle on a public right-of-way.
(i) 
Enforcement officers. This section may be enforced by any police officer of the Township or the Pennsylvania State Police.
(j) 
Enforcement procedures. The following procedures and penalties are prescribed for enforcement of this section.
(1) 
Warnings. If it is determined by a sound level meter reading that a noise level is in excess of the levels prescribed by this section, the Township shall, upon written complaint by the affected person, who resides in the Township, issue a written warning to the person responsible. Any such warning shall be in effect for six months.
(2) 
Offenses. If it is determined by a sound level meter reading that a noise level in excess of the levels permitted by this section shall have been caused or permitted by any person within six months after the issuance of a warning, any person affected thereby, who resides in the Township, may prosecute such person causing or permitting said noise level before the District Magistrate.
(3) 
Injunctions. In addition, any person affected thereby, may file legal or equitable actions in court to abate or enjoin violations of this section.
(4) 
Public nuisance. Any emission of noise from any source in excess of limitations established herein is hereby declared to be a public nuisance and may be abated by administrative or judicial proceedings, fines and penalties herein provided.
(5) 
Other remedies. Nothing in this section shall be construed to impair any cause of action or legal remedy thereof, of any person or the public for injury or damage arising from the emission or release into the atmosphere or ground from any source whatever of noise on such place or manner, or at such levels which may give rise to such cause of action.
(k) 
Relationship with other restrictions. The provisions of this section are not intended to interfere with, abrogate or annul other rules, regulations or ordinances, including Title 18 (Crimes Code) and Title 75 (Vehicle Code), Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes. If more stringent requirements concerning noise abatement are contained in other statutes, rules, regulations or ordinances, the more stringent regulation shall apply.
(l) 
Penalties. Any person, firm or corporation who shall violate any provision of this section shall, upon conviction thereof, as a summary offense, be sentenced to pay a fine of not more than $1,000; and in default of payment, to imprisonment for a term not to exceed 30 days. Every day that a violation of this section continues shall constitute a separate offense.
[1]
Editor's Note: See Section 202.99 for general Code penalty.