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Petition on uniform exhaust levels

Call for 110dB limit

noise noisy exh plate machismo crackdown

Motorcycle noise limits should be standardised to “power equipment” levels of 115dB, according to a petition to the Queensland Government.

The petition is in response to the Motorcycle Advocacy Group (Qld) Facebook page which claimed police harassment of riders and multiple defect notices.

This is despite data from the Queensland Transport and Main Roads Department showing only 13 motorcycles received defect notices last year and none was for exhaust noise.

The petition was lodged on 4 February 2021 by MAG spokesman David White who says it received 240 signatures in the first hour.

It points out that there is a disparity between state and federal vehicle regulations on exhaust noise. This disparity is similar in most other states.

The petition also points out the disparity of accepted levels according to specific vehicles.

The lowest level for a car is 67dB for a Lexus G300 with an upper limit of 115dB for a Maserati Grantourismo. For motorcycles, the limits vary from 79dB on a Yamaha XC125 to the Aprillia Tuono with 109db.

“A uniform upper noise limit should be applied to all replacement exhaust systems,” the petition says.

“We suggest a figure of 115db would address any existing anomalies. However 110db might be more environmentally responsible.”

Click here to read the full text of the petition.

Noise levels of 110dB are about the same as most power equipment that can legally be used in suburban areas during the hours of 7am (8am on Sunday) to 7pm.

The difference with a motorcycle is that it passes in seconds, while most power equipment such as whipper snippers, hedge trimmers, etc, last much longer.

It should be noted that the decibel noise rating is not a linear scale. A 5dB increase is only just discernible, while a 10dB increase is twice as loud and a 20dB is four times louder.

MAG claims the disparity in the laws is causing confusion among both riders and police who conduct roadside tests.

police harassment exhaust noise cops
An officer checks exhaust noise levels at Samford (Facebook photo)

Last year Brisbane barrister Levente Jurth successfully defended two riders over noise defects because he proved police roadside tests were flawed.

Levente also wrote an article for Motorbike Writer on why aftermarket exhaust are not illegal.

David’s petition says the regulations also cause economic issues for the aftermarket industry.

MAG’s plan to complain to the Crime and Corruption Commission about two police officers for harassing riders has been dropped with the matter being referred to an internal police investigation.