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Noise nuisance


Answer

In the first instance we would advise that you approach your neighbour directly in an attempt to resolve the situation. They may not be aware that the volume level is so high it can be heard by others. If you have already tried this you should contact the Environmental Health department of your local authority - most have 24-hour cover so can be contacted at any time.

For long-term problems, you may be asked by your local authority to keep a diary of information about the noise, such as when it occurs, how loud it is etc., and in some cases you may be provided with some equipment to record the noise. These two steps are designed to gather evidence. If the council then decides someone is causing a statutory noise nuisance, they must issue a 'noise abatement' order (i.e. a chance to turn the noise down), which if broken can lead to a fine of up to £5000, although it is likely they will give your neighbour the opportunity to turn the TV/music down without further action. The whole process can take some time to complete.

The police do not have any powers to prosecute for noise nuisance.

See the website in Related Information to find your local authority and to report noise pollution.


Answer

The police may attend incidents like this and can ask the organisers to take appropriate action to reduce the noise. However, the police have no powers of prosecution for noise offences, and it may be necessary for you to contact the Environmental Health Department at your local authority.

See the website in Related Information to find your local authority and to report noise pollution.


Answer

We would advise you to contact the Environmental Health Department at your local authority if this is a persistent problem.
All public houses and clubs are licensed by the local authority, so you should submit a formal complaint to them about this type of problem in the first instance. If property owners take little or no notice of such complaints they could put their license at risk.

The police have no powers to prosecute noise offences so it is advisable to contact the local authority.

See the website in Related Information to find your local authority.


Answer

You could speak to your neighbour about the problem as they may not be aware it is happening.

Unless there is any evidence of the dog being mistreated then the RSPCA will not be able to help. If you do believe that the dog is being mistreated, you can contact the RSPCA via their telephone number 0300 1234 999.

The noise could be classed as a noise nuisance so you would need to report it to the Environmental Health department of your local authority.

See the website in related information to find your local authority.


Answer

If the car alarm is a false activation and not someone attempting to steal or break into the vehicle it would be advisable in the first instance to speak to your neighbour about the problem as they may not be aware what is happening. If the problem persists you should contact the Environmental Health department at your local council who have powers to deal with nuisance car alarms.

See the website in related information to find your local authority.

If you do see someone trying to break into a vehicle contact the police on 999 immediately.


Answer

At present legislation only provides the local authority with the power to take action against loud car stereos if the car is on private land or parked on the street. If there is a car/a group of cars that is parked up constantly on your street and the stereos are being played very loud then you need to make a complaint to your local authority.

The police also have powers to deal with cars playing loud music (whilst driving and stationary) although the officers would have to be present and hear the noise before they could take any action.

If it is a one-off occurrence then neither the police nor the local authority will be likely to take any action. If however it is a persistent problem then either contact the local authority or your local police via their 101 number.

See the website in related information to find your local authority.


Answer

  • Low flying civilian aircraft
    Report to the Civil Aviation Authority, please see link in related information.
  • Low flying military aircraft
    Report to the Ministry of Defence, please see link in related information.
  • Low flying drone
    Report to your local police force.


Answer

As with any complaint of noise, you can report this to Environmental Services at your local authority. It may be possible to serve inconsiderate contractors with a noise abatement notice.

See the link in related information to find your local authority.

There are generally no legal restrictions on the times work may be carried out and sometimes it is necessary to work during unsociable hours for emergency repairs or to avoid traffic disruption.

If you can identify who is doing the work, for example, gas, electricity or water board, you may wish to contact them directly in the first instance.


Answer

Yes, there is something that the police can do. However, each police force will have a different policy on how it deals with raves. Please contact your local police and supply them with details of the rave and they will then take the appropriate action.

A rave is defined by the Oxford English dictionary as 'an illicit party or event, with dancing especially to fast electronic popular music'.


Answer

It is an offence to:

  • possess adult fireworks (all fireworks except category 1 fireworks - party poppers, sparklers, throwdowns etc) in a public place by anyone under the age of 18;
  • possess category 4 fireworks (professional display fireworks) by anyone other than a fireworks professional;
  • it is illegal to supply adult fireworks to those under 18;
  • throw or cast or fire any firework in or into any highway, street, thoroughfare or public space (this would include throwing or firing from a private place into a public place, street, highway etc);
  • to light any fire or discharge any firearm or firework (without lawful authority or excuse) within 50 feet of the centre of a highway which consists of or comprises a carriageway, and as a consequence, the highway is damaged.

There is a curfew on the use of adult fireworks between 11 pm and 7 am, except on:

  • Bonfire Night (when the curfew is between 12 midnight and 7 am);
  • New Year's Eve (when the curfew is between 1 am and 7 am);
  • Chinese New Year (when the curfew is between 1 am and 7 am);
  • Diwali Night (when the curfew is between 1 am and 7 am).

The penalties for using fireworks outside the above curfew hours are imprisonment (maximum 6 months) and a substantial fine. Please note, you could also commit offences if they were being used to cause a nuisance.

Please see websites in Related Information for details from the Health and Safety Executive on how to safely use fireworks and organise a fireworks display.


Answer

You could be arrested for swearing in the street. There are various offences which can be committed involving the use of threatening abusive words or behaviour. The effect on others and the intention of the person swearing would be some of the factors to consider when deciding whether an offence has been committed.

There is also an offence of using obscene and profane language in the street to the annoyance of residents. However, a person is only likely to be arrested for this offence if the behaviour occurs in the presence of a police officer.


Answer

The Police will only attend alarms installed in line with the National Police Chiefs' Council's (NPCC) Security Systems Policy. The majority of domestic alarms do not comply with that policy by virtue of the fact they are audible only systems.

The Police will also respond to domestic alarms, when there is some evidence of criminal activity. Should there be an activation and there is evidence of criminal activity or you see something suspicious, please dial 999. It is not advisable to put yourself in danger by making checks yourself.

If it appears to be a false activation, contact the police on their non-emergency number as they may have the owner's contact details on their database.

If it is a persistent problem, contact the local council or see the question in Related Information about noisy neighbours.

Contact your local police force

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