Panama City Commission Studies 25-Page New Noise Ordinance

Panama City Police have a good reason for you "not" to mow your lawn early on Saturday mornings. You could get a ticket. It’s part of a proposed new noise ordinance that has many locals sounding off.

Panama City commissioners are looking at changing the city's noise ordinance by making it easier to enforce, but you may be surprised to hear what sounds can get you in trouble.

A lawn mower puts out around 90 decibels of sound. Crank her up before 8 a.m. on a Saturday and you're looking at a warning. Do it three times and the city can take the mower away.

Michelle Garcia isn’t too happy with all the restrictions.

"It's a free country. If you don't want to hear it get some earplugs."

In fact no ongoing sound louder than 70 decibels from 7 p.m. to 10 a.m. in a neighborhood is allowed. That's no louder than your household vacuum cleaner.

Kendra Bane points out a problem with boom boxes in cars. "The cars when they go by and you hear the bass bumping real loud."

Angel Garcia agrees. "Those are a lot of noise when they keep going back and forth and back and forth I don't like it."

According to the noise ordinance car stereos shouldn't be heard from more than 50 feet away, but that's hard for police to measure unless they are standing on the side of the road waiting.

The new noise ordinance has two more readings before commissioners can bring it to a vote.

If your dog barks or howls for 10 minutes straight that could get you a ticket or a warning as well.


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