Revealed: Decibel-detecting roadside ‘noise camera’ promises to catch boy racers revving their engines
- Department for Transport trialling the technology in Hampshire’s Meon Valley
- Anyone caught breaching noise limits will be sent warning and could be fined
- The cameras, fitted with microphones, can detect excessively loud vehicles
This is the first sight of a decibel-detecting roadside device that promises to put the brakes on boy racers revving their engines.
New ‘acoustic cameras’ fitted with microphones will detect excessively loud vehicles and, like speed cameras, record the number plates of offenders.
Anyone caught breaching noise limits will be sent a warning letter and could be fined.
The Department for Transport is trialling the technology for the first time in Hampshire’s Meon Valley, not far from a popular motorcycle cafe on the A32, but penalties are not yet being enforced.
New ‘acoustic cameras’ (pictured) fitted with microphones will detect excessively loud vehicles and, like speed cameras, record the number plates of offenders
Experts will use the trial to determine the noise limits for different types of vehicles.
If successful, the acoustic cameras will then be rolled out across the UK. At present, there is no formal noise limit but police forces informally regard any sound over 90 decibels – four times as loud as a vacuum cleaner – as a nuisance.
The move is a response to growing concerns from police about noise pollution from car and motorbike engines.
Studies have found that exposure to noise can have significant physical and mental health implications – with heart attacks, diabetes and stress all linked to long-term contact with loud environments.
RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: ‘Noise pollution caused by a minority of vehicles can make some residents’ lives a misery.
‘Law-abiding motorists are right to be particularly annoyed when they see and hear cars and motorbikes that have been modified to make them louder.’