They’ve got cameras to catch you speeding, running red lights and borrowing bus lanes… and now, they’re getting noise cameras to prosecute you for having a noisy bike (or car). Welcome to Big Brother Britain.
Grant Shapps, the Transport Secretary, reckons it’s about time the government put a stop to “unbearable revving engines and noisy exhausts”, so with the help of Atkins-Jacobs Joint Venture, he’s trialing a new technology, worth £300,000, across four areas of England and Wales. These ‘listening cameras’ will be able to detect when a vehicle is making too much noise and, in the future, automatically issue fines to offending motorists.
Exactly how loud a vehicle can be, according to the law, is fairly vague, so I can see this being a difficult one to police. But the law does say that exhausts and silencers must be in good condition, and not altered to increase noise; breaking that particular law (and getting caught, obviously) could land you with a £50 fine.
The tech is still very much in the design stages, so I don’t think we all need to rush out and fit baffles to our exhausts, but this news may well be a sign of things to come.
I don’t really know how I feel about it to be honest. I understand that boy (or girl) racers, or people with ridiculously loud cars and bikes are pretty annoying. The bloke a few doors down from me is a perfect example; on more than one occasion, I’ve felt like pouring a bag of sugar into his fuel tank. But I never have, because I was always taught to live and let live. Is a bit of noise every now and then really worth getting too stressed about? Perhaps it is, if you’ve got to live with it every day. But I find it difficult to sympathise too much with the people that let it ruin their lives. Maybe just put some music on, or something?
What I do object to is more and more cameras on the streets, keeping tabs on us all day, every day. I know there’s an argument to say that “if you’re doing nothing wrong, you’ve got nothing to worry about,” but it’s all getting a little bit overbearing, isn’t it?
I suppose it’s too late for this, but what would be better (than more law-enforcement cameras) would be if people were a bit more sensible with their exhaust pipes and their throttles. As a society, we’ve brought all this on ourselves, really. If people were more considerate and didn’t go drag racing at 2am in residential areas, or went for the sensible aftermarket exhaust, rather than the 120dB ASBO-end-can, we probably wouldn’t find ourselves in this situation.
But we do. And it’s another victory for the Noise Abatement Society.
One problem with this is where is the evidence of harm? I can’t find anywhere any real evidence of harm caused by a noisy vehicle exhaust.
If there isn’t any evidence of harm then this response has to be excessive as its purely to solve an issue some people don’t like.
There are lots of different things that lots of different people don’t like and part of being in a developed society is that we tolerate them not start with the ‘if i don’t like it it’s wrong’ attitude which is exactly what these cameras are.
Noisy pipes are a nothing in this world of theft, war, abuse and countless disgusting crimes so common sense needs to be applied and this fools folly abandoned.
Basically some people have lost the ability to differentiate between a problem and an inconvenience….noisy pipes I would argue are an inconvenience.
Do I hear a loud exhaust now while typing this ‘working’ from home? Nah
Do I sometimes hear a loud exhaust every now and then on a sunny evening or weekend, yes and if it’s annoying I close my window or just ignore it because it will pass.
Is my exhaust loud, yes very and I like it a lot. But I know it can annoy some so I act appropriately.
Also if this ‘scheme’ got rolled out how would it impact all those small businesses, those cafes, pubs and village butty shops we all stop at on a ride out….I know if I knew I village was ‘camerad’ up I’d probs roll on by and stop somewhere else…so those poor sods lose out on my money then too.
Rant over. Dumb fuckery like this from the government really makes my shit stick and I wish they would get on and spend money on better things.
Oh and one more bloody thing, I wonder if grant schapps has any connection to any noise camera companies….that’d be interesting to know.
rant really over now.
There’s rules and regs for this already and all legal exhausts including aftermarket should be OK if they have the EU stamp. It’s people taking out the baffles or running a non road compliant exhaust that are going to get caught and prosecuted.
I think we’re all sick of constant nanny monitoring. These cameras seems especially redundant though as surely anyone with a rorty pipe can just pull the clutch in and wazz off straight after?
Apparently only one on trial A272 from loomies to Winchester but local motorcycle has applied for one near wisbrough green.
Balanced and reasonable. Are you feeling well Boothy?