May 22nd, 2024

Police utilizing bylaw officers to assist with noisy vehicle complaints

By BRENDAN MILLER on April 18, 2024.

Local bylaw officers have been given training by police to make traffic stop and charge people with noisy vehicles as the service is receiving a growing number of complaints from the public.--NEWS FILE PHOTO

To deal with the growing number of noisy vehicle complaints, the Medicine Hat Police Service is providing local bylaw officers training to conduct vehicle stops safely and enforce noisy vehicle legislation.

Municipal officers have different authorities in the province, however under the Traffic Safety Act, trained bylaw officers are permitted to make moving vehicle stops.

In the past Medicine Hat bylaw officers were not utilized to make traffic stops, however a large number of complaints around noisy vehicles left police struggling to deal with all the complaints.

“We thought, why don’t we train bylaw or bylaw officers on how to do this and not only how to do it, but how to do it safely,” explains Insp. Brent Secondiak. “So we had a day-long training, half of it was on how to do vehicle stuff safely and the second half was on the laws.”

Bylaw officers who underwent training will now be looking for motorists with unregulated, altered and damaged mufflers, that do not follow vehicle equipment regulations under provincial laws, as well as enforcing municipal bylaws affecting people’s behaviours.

“We think it’ll be effective,” says Secondiak. “Our bylaw members are really enthusiastic to start doing this. So the training was just two weeks ago, you’ll see in the next week or two, there’ll be a lot more enforcement.”

Police would like to remind motorists it’s illegal to amend your exhaust system or widen your muffler to make it louder. Under provincial legislation fines for altering mufflers can range from $150 to $250.

Drivers can also face an additional charge if they are unable to reduce the noise from their mufflers after 14 days.

“Everyone deserves to be at peace in their residence” adds Secondiak. “They don’t want to hear loud motorcycles or loud trucks waking them up at all hours of the night.”

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