Police have been known to hand out fines for noisy motorcycle exhausts, but in India you not only get a fine, the cops hammer the exhausts at the side of the road until they are useless.
The police crackdown follows noise complaints by Residents in Bangalore and Mysore, according to Indian motoring website Rushlane.com. That seems strange as they are already very noisy cities.
In fact, a recent World Health Organisation report found the sound of tyres on pavement is one of the biggest contributors to noise pollution. There was no mention of motorcycle exhaust noise.
However, that doesn’t stop police in many countries cracking down on loud motorcycle exhausts.
Every week we read of some country cracking down more on noisy motorcycle exhausts, introducing new laws or increasing fines. Even in Detroit Motor City they have introduced a law that bans exhausts that can be heard 50m away!
Motorcycle noise limits vary around the world. In Australia, the stationary noise level for a motorbike built after February 1985 is 94dB. In India, it’s 90dB.
Bangalore Police pulled over hundreds of riders recently and fined them, then made the riders watch as their exhausts were broken of the motorcycles and hit with a hammer.
The reports do not say whether police used a dB meter to determine the noise of the exhaust.
In Australia, police have been known to issue a fine based on their judgement rather than a calibrated scientific noise meter.
What usually happens is they will issue a show-cause notice as the roadside test may not be sufficient to issue a ticket.
Instead, you will be summoned to take your bike to a transport department facility for a proper noise test.
If you fail, you will not only pay a fine, but have to present the bike again with a compliant muffler fitted before the bike is deemed legal.
At least they don’t use a hammer!
(Read the articles below for more information on exhaust noise and how you can fight fines.)