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Noise camera trial to crack down on illegal vehicles

The Department for Transport is targeting drivers who disturb communities with a crackdown on vehicles that are breaking legal noise limits.

New camera technology to be trialled by the government aims to measure the sound levels of passing vehicles to detect those that are breaking the law on noise limits, and could use automated number plate recognition to help enforce the law.

Research commissioned by the Department for Transport, found that a noise camera system could help tackle extremely noisy vehicles which breach legal noise limits.

It could also help to catch those who rev car or motorcycles engines beyond legal limits, making life a misery for those who live close by.

Studies have found that exposure to noise can have significant physical and mental health implications, with heart attacks, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and stress all linked to long-term contact with loud environments.

Currently, enforcement is mainly reactive and relies on subjective judgement. The trials of the new technology will determine whether the legal noise limit has been breached by taking into account the class and speed of the vehicle relative to the location of the noise camera.

The government has commissioned a prototype noise camera to be tested at several locations over the next seven months. If the trials are successful, recommendations will be made to further develop the system across the UK.

(Published by the Department for Transport: 8 June 2019)