Sound systems in cars are meant for driver and passenger entertainment. However, some owners tweak their vehicles’ audio and exhaust systems and install aftermarket parts to make theirs significantly louder. Unsurprisingly, the noise can be a nuisance. Furthermore, listening to loud music while driving can be dangerous. That’s why a new Florida law makes blasting loud car music a punishable offense.
A new Florida law cracks down on loud car music and exhausts
Car sound system display | Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images
A new law went into effect in Florida on July 1 that makes playing loud car music a punishable offense. Offenders can be issued $114 fines. Notably, anyone blasting music from a car that can be heard from 25 feet away or farther can be penalized.
Because the average length of a car is 15 feet, a police officer behind the offending vehicle could give the driver a ticket if the noise is audible, NBC Miami reports. In addition, enforcement is stricter near institutions like churches and schools.
A new Florida law going into effect will allow law enforcement officers to give tickets to drivers playing music too loud in their cars.
“audio coming from a vehicle that can be heard from a distance of 25 feet or more can result in an infraction.” https://t.co/h8mIy5tSNW
— Rex Chapman?? (@RexChapman) June 27, 2022
The new law isn’t the first of its kind. Fort Lauderdale, located in South Florida, already has a similar rule for noise pollution. However, with the backing of the state, the city’s law will be much more enforceable.
Also worth mentioning is that the new Florida regulation also includes loud exhaust systems and rattling mufflers. They’re generally aftermarket parts that car owners install.
NBC Miami reports that officers are trained to identify illegal exhaust noise.
That said, another Florida city is considering installing noise-detecting cameras to measure the sound output.
A Miami Beach commissioner wants to curb what ‘sounds like bombs’ from some vehicles
Noise-detecting cameras proposed for Miami Beach to target loud car music and exhausts https://t.co/eksDGLjXXD
— Miami Herald (@MiamiHerald) July 6, 2022
The City of Miami Beach might consider a plan to cut noise pollution further. According to the Miami Herald, Commissioner Steven Meiner recently proposed installing noise-detecting cameras. They would work similarly to speed cameras but would detect the decibel level in offending vehicle and take a snapshot of the license plate.
Meiner said he proposed the sound-detecting cameras after residents constantly complained of excessive noise from modified exhaust systems as drivers revved their car engines late at night.
“This has become a major quality-of-life issue for our residents,” Meiner told the Miami Herald. “It sometimes sounds like bombs going off from the back of their vehicles.”
Miami Beach’s pilot program would be similar to those in New York and Knoxville, Tennessee.
Safety concerns regarding loud cars
A car audio system can help its occupants enjoy their ride. However, listening to loud music in your car can prove not only annoying to others but also dangerous.
Driving requires the use of most of your senses, and by raising a car’s audio volume, you hamper your hearing. Consequently, if an emergency vehicle like an ambulance is moving at full speed, it’ll be too late to move out of the way when you eventually hear the siren.
It can be worse with heavier vehicles like fire trucks since the risk to your life increases in case of a collision. The same applies to other cars and drivers on the road. This is particularly the case for electric vehicles, which are virtually silent when operating.
Also, even if there’s no risk of a collision, another driver might try to warn you of incoming problems via their car horn. Of course, you’ll miss this if all you can hear is blasting music.