Is New York Among the States with the Highest Noise Levels in the United State?

New York State has enacted a new law targeting excessively noisy vehicles, a measure aimed at enhancing public health and safety. Signed into law by Governor Kathy Hochul, the legislation increases penalties for motorists and repair shops that illegally modify mufflers and exhaust systems, making them overly loud​​. Governor Hochul believes these modifications, often associated with aggressive driving, compromise community health, safety, and comfort​​.

The bill imposes stricter regulations on vehicle equipment and significantly increases fines and penalties. The maximum fine for installing illegal equipment has been raised to $1,000, marking an $850 increase. Additionally, inspection stations are now mandated to inspect motorcycles to ensure that mufflers and exhausts have not been illegally modified​​.

Governor Hochul emphasized the importance of this legislation, stating, “Every New Yorker deserves to feel safe and comfortable in their community, and that includes cracking down on excessively noisy vehicles on our streets.” The law aims to deter drivers from installing illegal vehicle equipment that can lead to dangerous noise levels, potentially contributing to hearing loss and increased emissions​​.

The legislation also addresses repair shop owners, creating a deterrent for them against making these modifications. If they violate this law by installing illegal vehicle equipment three times within 18 months, they risk losing their certificate of inspection stations and operating certificate​​.

Senator Andrew Gounardes expressed relief at the law’s enactment, noting, “Today, residents across the state can breathe a sigh of relief knowing that they won’t be kept up at night by excessively loud mufflers and exhaust systems.” He underscored the quality of life and public safety issues posed by these loud vehicles, which disrupt communities without any logical reason other than making noise​​.

The bill aims to address the disturbances caused by motorists and motorcycle riders operating illegally loud vehicles, particularly late at night, by targeting repair and installation shops that modify car, truck, and motorcycle exhaust systems illegally. The increase in fines is expected to serve as an effective deterrent​