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NSW Noise testing July 2015

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' started by Vertical C, Jul 22, 2015.

  1. Up until recently, riders have not been fined for noise infringements, possibly to avoid the infringement being contested in Court. However there are now some instances coming to our attention where Infringement Notices and fines are being issued.
    For example, Ron (let's call him) was riding his Ducati when flagged over by Police set up on the roadside. They told him his non-standard exhausts were illegal and issued him an Infringement Notice and wrote “exhaust” on the plain part of the Notice (Code 81633 - $106). When handing him his ticket, the policeman has told him he can expect a Notice from the EPA in about 6 weeks, to take his bike for testing.
    There are a number of issues here:
    (1) The bike was not tested for noise output;
    (2) The Police are alleging his non-original exhausts are automatically illegal;
    (3) If Ron simply pays the fine, he’s telling NSW he’s guilty to the charge;
    (4) Once the conviction is recorded, the EPA legislation clicks in and he’s listed for a First Offence (the price then goes up for any subsequent offence);
    (5) Offences listed by Police are automatically forwarded to the EPA who then issue a Notice to the offender to bring their vehicle for testing.
    Thus, both Ron and the vehicle can be subject to separate enforcement action. The EPA can cancel his registration if the alleged defect is not repaired. BUT, he was NOT issued with a Defect Notice. That’s rarely used for exhausts or other EPA “environmental” offences. (Defect Notices do not generate revenue).
    He has 21 days, or 3 weeks to deal with the fine. Then, assuming he’s paid it, the EPA admin cranks into action and he, as the owner of the offending vehicle, gets a Notice to attend with his bike about two to three weeks later. Hence the officer's story that he will get a Notice in “about 6 weeks’ time”
    This is a very general Offence Code that can be applied to ANY alleged breach of any of the items in Schedule 2 to the NSW Road Transport (Vehicle Registration) Regulation 2007, plus other specific items detailed in the body of the Regulation i.e. the Police simply claim your vehicle doesn’t comply. This is the same offence used for blinkers, rear mudguards, etc, your imagination is the only limit.
    The temptation is to just pay the $106 fine and move on. however, what is important is to contest the allegation and dispose of it as quickly as possible.
    Our man Ron had Staintunes fitted, not original Ducati items. We know that Staintunes issue exhausts that comply. We also know the Police issued the fine on the basis that a non-standard exhaust was automatically illegal.
    If it happens to you here is a suggested path to follow:
    (1) Immediately identify the local noise test facility
    (2) Book in for a test and have it happen in the next few days;
    (3) Obtain a Certificate showing compliance;
    (4) Write to the SDRO, setting out the following:-
    a. Please withdraw Infringement Notice No:xxxxxx
    b. It is without merit
    c. See attached Certificate of compliance (copy only)
    d. Should it not be withdrawn, I will contest this in court
    By using a noise test facility that is registered with the EPA, the process is short-circuited.
    Hope this helps. As always, let us know if you have any comments. Safe Riding!

    • Like Like x 7
    • Informative Informative x 4
  2. The only issue would be the cost of getting your bike tested versus the fine cost.
  3. The fee for the test is apparently $40, however just paying the fine would also be a risky move as second offence has a steeper fine.

    Just FYI.
  4. I've always wondered if my bike would even read on the decibel chart. It sounds reasonable in a tunnel
  5. It amazes me that any cager can have an "after-market" exhaust fitted to their 4-wheeler, but take two wheels away and we must always use the genuine manufacturers parts.

    Can't remember anyone ever buying an exhaust from a car dealer, and also can't remember anyone "automatically" being infringed by having a Burkley sticker instead of GMH on their exhaust. If it passes a sound test it passes, and unless the police are now carrying round (calibrated) sound meters and setup the test according to the ADR, these infringements are bogus.

    My one run-in with the ACT RTA Inspectors over a loud exhaust issue was an invitation to the testing station at Dickson, where for the measly sum of $30 I got to have my exhaust tested, but no fine was given. I asked the RTA dude at the time how he can perform a roadside test with all the ambient noise of trucks and other cars whizzing past, his response is that they only need to "believe" it is non-compliant to force you to having it tested.

    NSW might be different, but looks like the guilty until proven innocent rule applies once more.
  6. Is this a new trend , a one off, or is it perhaps the beginning of a (fined for wearing a go pro type thread)
  7. From the MCC NSW advice they use "instances" rather than "instance" which seems to indicate more than once it has occured.

    That is why I cross posted the warning in case anyone else had any other instances, so they knew what to do, well at least the more people that know the better.
    • Like Like x 1
  8. Dude, seriously, breath. I've been done for aftermarket exhaust in my cage.

    This whole us vs cager's things grinds my gears.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. What's the point of it though? Does it pull the chicks?
  10. The point is not that cars don't get pulled - I said that I've been sprung, so I know first hand. I wasn't saying that every aftermarket exhaust is legal, but that aftermarket exhausts can be legal - i.e. the Staintune mentioned above.

    My point was no one looks sideways at what make of exhaust goes on a car, but if it is not the OEM brand on a bike its automatically deemed illegal (Point 2 made by VC).

    What I'm trying to say is that it's only non-compliant if its above the ADR rating, it should not matter if its a car or a bike. And without the correct testing equipment how can Mr Plod determine the sound level, they are issuing fines on the presumption that all aftermarket cans are illegal.

    So next step, are you running OEM tires, screens, light bulbs ?
  11. The exact same has happened to me, I was pulled over and issues an infringement notice for my loud exhaust, even though it's a VTR 250 with a staintune which I've tested and only comes out to about 85 decibel's. However, I had moved house at the time and never got the notice (yes, I updated my address at the RTA), thought the cop may have just been being a dickhead. (The speeding notice he gave me was improperly filled out, not even registration of the bike or listed speed. Which, was also an improper fine in a school zone, even though it was a public holiday, and on contesting was retracted.

    A month ago I contacted the RTA to renew my registration and was told my bike had a defect notice and could not be registered, contacted the EPA and they have told me they need to send me a form to get it tested and checked, given my new address is in rural NSW I do not need to go to an approved EPA testing station, but I don't know where exactly I need to take it as I still, after a month, have not received the form.

    Just thought I'd share my experience.
  12. I actually can't understand how the majority of HD's don't get pulled over for noise, they've got to be way above the legal noise level.

    Not a hate post, HD's are just really loud...
    • Agree Agree x 2
    • Like Like x 1
  13. If you had an aftermarket exhaust could you get it tested by an appropriate testing facility and laminate a copy of the report?
    Keep that under your seat and if pulled over ,just whip it out and show the officer (the report that is) that this exhaust has been tested and meets requirements - would that be sufficient do you think?
    I have modified engineer certified truck and keep an engineers certificate in it at all times stating that it has been inspected, tested and meets legal requirements.
  14. Quite honestly, if a plod is going to the trouble of infringing you on this kind of crap, I wouldn't be engaging in roadside debate (I know others here have a different POV).
    I think a better policy might be to take your evidence and discuss with the issuing officer's supervisor at the police station, where there is less opportunity for shenanigans than by the side of the road.
    It might work, but the advice published above is ultimately better. An old test is worth nothing in court, it needs to be current. This is a different situation to your engineers certificate.
  15. This is exactly why I still have the original exhaust - if I do happen to fail a noise or other test, I can refit the OEM exhaust, get it tested and get on with life.

    Now, why do people fit after market exhausts to bikes? Here's a few I've heard/used. Some are valid, some are bullshit or at least urban myths others are a matter of personal taste.

    1. Loud Pipes Saves Lives.
    2. Fitting an after market pipe, re-jetting the carb or remapping the FI and fitting a K&N, DNA or similar air filter can improve overall performance of the bike and can fix 'flat spots' in the power and torque delivery.
    3. Reduces weight which has handling, performance and efficiency benefits.
    4. Looks better.
    5. Sounds better.
  16. ... to add a couple more (aftermarket can often be cheaper than OEM)
    - had trouble sourcing or couldn't afford OEM
    - or, replaced with cheaper in case ding it, scratch it up etc and have kept OEM for if/when want to sell bike.
    • Like Like x 2
  17. I have the stock exhaust on my MT09 and it is very quiet.
    It just doesn't seem worth it to get an after market exhaust that could draw any attention from mr police officer.
    What concerns me however is that mr police officer can without any evidence issue a fine because he just wants to. It's then up to you to get testing and take it to court. He could even do it to me on my bike and say "yes it's a stock pipe and you have a Db rating sticker but you could have done anything to it since that sticker was placed there". Again it's then up to me to go though the expense of getting it tested to prove its still stock.
    Where does it end?
  18. Just to be clear, the fine that they are issuing in the OP scenario can only apply to non stock exhaust. This is because it is specifically for having non standard equipment.

    Though what you are saying may happen too but there is no evidence of that yet.
    • Informative Informative x 1
  19. Great, thanks for that.
  20. You're absolutely right, but unfortunately we gave up that right a long time ago. The vast majority of minor offences require significant money and effort to defend, not just bike exhausts.
    Ultimately, the legal system is set up to benefit the legal system.

    But if the legal system itself cannot be totally fixed, I think it should be possible to tweak it to make the police (and state) cover all costs when a prosecution fails. It happens, but only rarely.