Maine Adopts Practical Test for Measuring Motorcycle Sound

Since 1924, the AMA has protected the future of motorcycling and promoted the motorcycle lifestyle.

PICKERINGTON, Ohio — Maine has adopted a simple yet reliable testing procedure that allows motorcyclists to prove their bikes don’t violate Maine’s motor vehicle sound law, the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) reports.

Under a new law that went into effect on May 26, motorcyclists ticketed for excessive sound emitting from their motorcycle exhausts can go to a certified inspection station for sound testing.

There, the exhaust system would be tested using the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) J2825 stationary sound testing procedure — “Measurement of Exhaust Sound Pressure Levels of Stationary On-Highway Motorcycles” — which the SAE developed and adopted with support from the Motorcycle Industry Council in May 2009.

Under the SAE J2825 standard, which the AMA has endorsed, decibel limits range from 92 dBA at idle for all motorcycles, to 100 dBA at certain RPMs for various motorcycles, depending on the type of engine. If a motorcycle meets these limits during the certified testing, then it is evidence that the motorcycle doesn’t violate the state’s sound law.

“This new law is good news for responsible motorcyclists who ride in Maine because it provides an objective way to prove that a motorcycle doesn’t violate the state’s sound law, rather than relying on subjective judgments,” said Imre Szauter, AMA government affairs manager. “We applaud the state of Maine — the first in the nation — for adopting the SAE J2825 standard.”

The AMA has long maintained a position of strong opposition to excessive motorcycle sound. The SAE J2825 standard is at the heart of model legislation developed by the AMA for use by jurisdictions seeking a simple, consistent and economical way to deal with sound complaints related to on-highway motorcycles within the larger context of excessive sound from all sources.

For information on the AMA’s model legislation, go tohttp://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Libraries/Rights_Documents_Other/Model_On_Highway_Sound_Ordinance-1.sflb.ashx

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To see the AMA’s position on excessive motorcycle sound, seehttp://www.americanmotorcyclist.com/Rights/PositionStatements/ExcessiveMotorcycleSound.aspx

Maine Legislator Heats Up Motorcycle Noise Debate

Many motorcyclists in Maine may be still hibernating with temperatures dipping below freezing at night and  a chance of snow forecast for later in the week but that isn’t stopping Rep. Diane Russel from pushing her anti-motorcycle agenda in the State Senate.

Russell who admits her noise legislation is personal says motorcyclists who ride with modified exhaust are “stupid.”   She has introduced two bills aimed at increasing the fine for non-EPA approved exhaust to $999 for a third offense.

Russell told the media, “If they want to drive a motorcyle and make a lot of noise and if they get zinged for it and have to pay $500 bucks, that’s their problem and I don’t feel sorry for them–if they’re that stupid then they deserve to pay $500 bucks,” he said. “But why should the rest of Maine suffer because some cowboy wants to put a great big thing and drive like anything?”

Motorcycle rights group oppose the bill on several grounds, one of which is that the fines exceed those of “life threatening injuries.”

Eric Fuller of Jay, who chairs the Maine Motorcyclists Political Action Committee said, “While it may be nice to target certain actions or people we dislike, the judicial systems of this nation have held a system of equality for this country.”

Senator Russel says that a group of motorcycle riders momentarily disrupted a party at her house and that is what gave her the incentive to try to punish those with loud pipes.

“The reason I got involved with this: I was having a family get together at my house and I had grandchildren there and great grandchildren there. Four motorcycles came by–boom, boom, boom,” he told lawmakers. “All of us except one grabbed their ears. That’s common sense and common knowledge–except the six-month-old in the stroller. For some reason he wasn’t smart enough to do that. I’m asking you people here to protect us citizens of the state of Maine.”