Report a Noise Disturbance

noise pollution cover ears graphic

What is considered a violation of the City’s noise ordinance?

 

For sound originating in commercial, CBD, and industrial districts, the noise ordinance uses a decibel level standard to determine whether a noise ordinance violation exists. These sound level limits are:

Sound Level Limits

Originating District
   Central Business District Commercial  Industrial

Daytime

7:00 AM to 10:00 PM

72

65

70

Nighttime

10:00 PM to 7:00 AM

67

57

65

  1. In the central business (CBD) and commercial districts, daytime hours for sound level limits are extended on Friday and Saturday to 11:00 PM.
  2. In the central business district (CBD), nighttime sound level limits are reduced between 2:00 AM and 7:00 AM by an additional five decibels.
  3. The sound level limits are reduced by five decibels for any source of sound emitting a pure tone, continuous sound, cyclically varying sound, or repetitive impulsive sound.

Sound levels are typically measured from a complainant’s property in the proximity of where the sound is being received using the A-weighting scale (dBA) on an ANSI Class 1 or 2 sound level meter set on slow response for an interval of one minute (Leq1). Sound level limits reflect a one minute average (Leq1), not a single maximum level (Lmax) reading.

 

For sound originating in residential districts, public space (parks) and right-of-ways (streets, sidewalks), noise ordinance uses a noise disturbance standard to determine whether a noise ordinance violation exists. 

A noise disturbance is any unreasonably loud and raucous sound or noise that:

  • Endangers or injures the health or safety of humans or animals;
  • Endangers or injures personal or real property; or
  • Disturbs a reasonable person of normal sensitivity.

Criteria for a determining whether a noise ordinance exists in these areas are:

  1. Whether the noise occurred during daytime or nighttime hours; 
  2. The volume and intensity (note: may include decibel level); 
  3. Whether the noise has been enhanced in volume or range by any type of megaphone, amplifier, or other mechanical means; 
  4. The frequentness and duration of the noise, and;  
  5. The nature and zoning of the area.

 

Read the full noise regulation ordinance here.

 


Report a disturbance

What can I do if I am disturbed by noise? 

  • Call the Asheville Police Department’s non-emergency line at 828-252-1110
  • Email noise@ashevillenc.gov. Noise Compliance Division staff will respond within 48 hours of receipt. 
  • For animal noise, call the Animal Services Division at 828-252-1110. Animal Services Officers are available Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m to assist with animal noise concerns. 

 

For more information, visit the Noise Compliance Division webpage


Updated 09/15/2021