In the wake of recent fines for motorcycle exhaust noise and the controversy of roadside testing procedures, another issue that unfairly affects riders in some states is the lack of testing stations.
Longtime motorcycle advocate Wayne Carruthers asks how riders can access test stations, particularly in country areas of NSW, Queensland and Victoria.
“The issue could be a political embarrassment to those Governments who are reliant on votes from regional areas.”
We asked Queensland Police how riders who want to comply with noise regulations could confirm their bike’s noise output.
They replied that the motorcycle should have a label advising of the decibel level, that all new bikes complied and that “there are exhaust shops that have the required equipment to test the noise level of vehicles”.
However, Wayne says the location of official noise-testing stations can be an expensive problem for rural riders.
“People in regional areas who have been issued a notice by police can have considerable time and expense wasted just in getting to a testing location to have the notice lifted,” he says.
“In NSW and Queensland, in particular, those in western regions can have 1000s of kilometres to travel with at times up to two days taken out of work simply to attend a testing station.
“This is not practical for many motorists not just motorcyclists and a clear example of the inequity of application of the state regulations.
“The testing for noise and emissions needs to be reconsidered by governments and authorities.”
H says it should be returned to authorised testers as per annual registration systems.
“The systems in place in the some states would surely be an embarrassment to the relevant Ministers and not sit well with regional voters,” he says.
Noise testing locations
NSW: The EPA website incorrectly states for motorcycles manufactured after 1 March 1984 is 94 decibels. Many motorcycles sold including BMW S1000RR 2015 have stickers indicating approval with 107dbA.
There are only eight NSW test centres listed on this website and they are mostly based around the major centres of Newcastle, Sydney and Wollongong with only Coffs Harbour and Wagga listed for regional areas.
Examples of the distances a motorist would need to travel in NSW are:
Broken Hill – 1500km round trip to Wagga Wagga
Bathurst – 280km round trip to Richmond
Dubbo – 660km round trip to Richmond
Coonabarabran – 1150km round trip to Wagga Wagga
Tamworth – 600km round trip to Coffs Harbour
Tenterfield – 600km round trip to Coffs Harbour
South Australia: Noise Testing appears to be done by DPTI inspection stations.
Western Australia: Only six authorised private Noise Level Assessors are listed.
ACT and Northern Territory: Unknown