Engine brakes ain’t noise pollution … anymore

Southbank residents who live within earshot of the Burnley Tunnel entrance have had a massive breakthough, after VicRoads installed a static noise camera, in an attempt to lessen traffic noise.

The major target is trucks using engine brakes as they enter the tunnel.

After almost seven years of campaigning on the issue, Yarra Condos resident David Jones is looking forward to some peace and quiet.

Mr Jones told Southbank Local News he first sent letters and emails on the issue in May 2007.

“I am simply looking forward to a steady reduction in the noise over the next few months, and perhaps by next year this part of Southbank will be a much quieter place to live,” Mr Jones explained.

Mr Jones said due to the nature of apartment living there were thousands of people affected by traffic noise in the area.

“The noise in question is a very distinctive and intrusive sound, and it goes on throughout the day and the night, every day of the week,” he said.

“If a truck is properly maintained, then it will not make this noise, and so it totally unnecessary for people’s lives to be disturbed in this way.”

Mr Jones said it was too early to gauge results, but added: “Since a number of infringements have already been issued to truck operators, the word will soon spread.”

“The penalties will be an effective deterrent, and so I would expect to see a great reduction in the number of noisy trucks in the coming months.”

VicRoads director, vehicle and road use policy, James Holgate, confirmed the static noise camera had been installed in December 2013 and switched on in February this year.

He also explained that the lobbying from residents such as Mr Jones had been a significant factor in decided to install the camera.

“The camera was installed to address residents’ concerns about the use of excessively noisy engine brakes by trucks,” Mr Holgate said.

“At this stage, it is permanently located at the entrance to the Burnley Tunnel.”

Mr Holgate also confirmed the penalties in place for any vehicles that don’t comply with noise restrictions.

“Under the noise camera system, the registered operator of a vehicle VicRoads suspects is excessively noisy will be sent a notice,” Mr Holgate said.

“The notice will require the operator to present their vehicle to an Environmental Protection Authority heavy vehicle noise testing station to ensure compliance with current vehicle noise standards,” he explained.

“Failure to comply with the notice can result in suspension of the vehicle’s registration.”

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