Vroom, vroom, vroom.
New York City has never been one for the faint of heart. For many New Yorkers, noise is simply a part of life in the big bad city.
These days, if your car’s engine goes vroom too loudly, you risk a very expensive summons.
In 2023, the City began to install noise cameras at targeted locations where residents most often complain about excessive sounds from the streets. As of now, there are only ten in the entire City. But that will soon change. By September 30, 2025, the City Council will require at least five noise cameras per borough. Their exact locations are not publicized.
These cameras function much like speed or red light cameras. They activate when they hear an engine noise in excess of 85 decibels. A camera records a quick video of the offending vehicle, with the license plate visible. The summons is issued by mail to the vehicle’s owner.
Fines range from $800 to $2500.
As of the end of 2023, there have only been a few hundred of these violations issued. But expect them to be more prevalent as the cameras multiply and as the City begins to see them as a potential source of revenue.
Besides, these snazzy noise cameras cost $35,000 a pop. There’s only one way for them to pay for themselves.
These tickets are not easy to beat. It’s tough to beat a camera, and you can’t cross-examine one, either.
But my office fights these tickets, and if you receive one, you have the right to a hearing with an attorney.