Chapter 8.10


8.10.010    Declaration of policy.

8.10.020    Findings.

8.10.025    Definitions.

8.10.027    Designation of EDNAs.

8.10.030    Prohibited acts.

8.10.040    Penalties.

8.10.010 Declaration of policy.

It is the policy of the city to minimize the exposure of citizens to physiological and psychological dangers of excessive noise and to protect, promote and preserve the public health, safety and general welfare. It is the express intent of the city council to control the level of noise in a manner which promotes the use, value and enjoyment of property, sleep and repose, and the quality of the environment. (Ord. 636 § 1, 1990)

8.10.020 Findings.

Pursuant to RCW 70.107.060, the city council finds that the regulations set forth in CHMC 8.10.030 are made necessary by local conditions. The city is almost exclusively residential in nature with very few properties devoted to commercial and other nonresidential uses. This residential character renders the noises regulated in CHMC 8.10.030 particularly disturbing and annoying in the city and necessitates different thresholds and considerations for the city’s noise regulations than are evident in those adopted by the state. (Ord. 636 § 1, 1990)

8.10.025 Definitions.

For purposes of implementation and enforcement of this chapter, the following terms shall have the assigned meanings:

A. “dBA” means the sound pressure level in decibels measured using the “A” weighting network on a sound level meter. The sound pressure level, in decibels, of a sound is 20 times the logarithm to the base 10 of the ratio of the pressure of the sound to a reference pressure of 20 micropascals.

B. “EDNA” means the environmental designation for noise abatement, being an area or zone (environment) within which maximum permissible noise levels are established. For purposes of this definition, WAC 173-60-030(1), identifying and describing the classes of EDNAs recognized by the State Department of Ecology shall be adopted by reference.

C. “Leaf blower” means any electric, gas or other alternative fuel-powered piece of equipment or device primarily designed to blow, expel or vacuum air in order to sweep, move or blow leaves, grass clippings, dust, and other types of yard and garden debris.

D. “Noise” means the intensity, duration and character of sounds, from any and all sources.

E. “Property boundary” means the surveyed line at ground surface, which separates the real property owned, rented, or leased by one or more persons, from that owned, rented, or leased by one or more other persons, and its vertical extension.

F. “Receiving property” means real property within which the maximum permissible noise levels specified within this chapter shall not be exceeded from sources outside such property. (Ord. 815 § 1, 2000)

8.10.027 Designation of EDNAs.

Pursuant to the authority of Chapter 70.107 RCW and WAC 173-60-030(2), the city council designates all residentially zoned property within the boundaries of the city limits to be EDNA Class A (residential). The council further designates all commercially zoned property within the boundaries of the city limits to be EDNA Class B (commercial). (Ord. 815 § 1, 2000)

8.10.030 Prohibited acts.

It is unlawful for any person to commit or cause or permit to be committed, any of the following acts, when done in such a manner as to unreasonably annoy, disturb, injure or endanger the comfort, repose, convenience, health, peace or safety of others, within the limits of the city:

A. The sounding of any horn, siren or signaling device on any automobile, motorcycle or other vehicle within the city, except as a warning of danger or as specifically permitted or required by law;

B. The playing, using, operating or permitting to be played, used or operated, of any machine or device for the producing, reproducing or amplifying of sound between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. in such a manner as to be plainly audible at a distance of 50 feet from the location of such machine or device, or at the nearest property boundary, whichever is farther away;

C. The playing, using, operating or permitting to be played, used or operated, of any motor vehicle audio sound system, such as a tape player, radio, or compact disc player, at a volume so as to be audible at a distance of 50 feet from the vehicle itself;

D. The operation, or permitting the operation of, any motor vehicle upon the city streets or private roads which is not equipped with a muffler in good working order, in constant operation, and which meets the requirements established by RCW 46.37.390, as that section now exists or as it may hereafter by amended or modified;

E. The erection (including excavation), demolition, alteration or repair of any building, structure, lane, street or road, within the city other than between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on weekdays, (other than holidays) and 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. In cases of the urgent necessity of protecting health and property, an owner, builder or other person, firm or corporation, may apply to the city building official for a permit to work during other than the hours herein specified. If the building official determines that the public health and safety will not be impaired, he may issue a permit for a period not to exceed three days. The permit may be renewed for periods of up to three days while the emergency continues;

F. The operation, or permitting the operation of, a motor vehicle in such a manner as to cause or allow to be emitted squealing, screeching, or other sound from the tires in contact with the ground or other roadway surface because of rapid acceleration or excessive speed around corners or other such reason; provided that, the sounds resulting from emergency braking to avoid imminent danger shall be exempt from this section;

G. The operation, or permitting of the operation, of any leaf blower other than between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. on weekdays (other than holidays), and 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays; provided, that such prohibition shall not apply to equipment or machinery operated in such a manner so as to not cause noise to intrude upon receiving properties above a maximum permissible level of 45 dBA. It shall be the burden of the operator or noise source property owner to establish that the operation of such equipment or machinery does not exceed this maximum permissible noise level. (Ord. 815 § 2, 2000; Ord. 636 § 1, 1990)

8.10.040 Penalties.

Any person violating any provision of this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall be punished as provided in CHMC 1.08.010. (Ord. 636 § 1, 1990)