I live in Hilo on the Big Island of Hawaii and have been experiencing extreme noise pollution while in my house with the windows closed, sitting in traffic, walking in public via boom cars/trucks. As a 59 year old my hearing is compromised through the natural progression of aging and yet i can not only hear the music 3 blocks away my body also feels it. Researching Hawaii noise laws i see there are laws against such extreme noise, unfortunately law enforcement is either overwhelmed with more pressing violations or not interested in enforcing the law. Is there a way to stop the runaway train on our own islands before we become victims the boom car industry as witnessed on the mainland ? Similar to the negative effects invasive species have on the islands, the long term effects will only lead to more frequent invasions accompanied by increasing in decibels.
Please if you have any suggestions on what can be done to stop this physically audible or is it audibly physical assault i would be very grateful.
Quieter O'ahu Response:
You've stated very succinctly the problem heard, and felt, by many, many people throughout our Islands. This stereo industry has long been out of control. They continue to grow and the noise continues to increase because, simply, there's a lot of money on the line in the aftermarket, high-powered, stereo, amplifier, and speaker industry. These systems literally cost thousands of dollars. Each time there has been the emergence of a "Legislative Champion" who attempts to legislate stronger laws with fewer loopholes, the industry steps-in with campaign donations and other incentives that makes these initiatives suddenly disappear. It's a corrupt industry who doesn't care about the health or quality of life of those subjected to this unreasonable and unhealthy noise, and that corruption is rivaled only by the political corruption of elected officials who refuse to do anything about it.
You are correct, however, in your observation that there are already existing noise laws "on the books." And it is NOT the case that our law enforcement is "Overwhelmed" with other, more pressing, crimes. They have just decided to turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to these violations. And why not, they are seemingly never held to account.
We urge those who have had enough to be unrelenting in letting your displeasure be known to your elected officials. Your voice, and the voices of your friends, family, and acquaintances telling your representative that you have had enough and "if they don't take a stand you'll find someone who will" remains the best strategy. Only when politicians believe there are enough people aligned against this plague of noise, and that their seat in the legislature, or other elected position, is in danger, will we see change. That change may be in the form of tougher laws, or pressure on law enforcement, including our Prosecutors, to prosecute offenders. We hope that it will be both. We know there is already a loud grass-roots voice, and we encourage others to join in the chorus. Yes, it will take time, depending on how many are vocal, and how loud their collective voices.
Thank you for contacting us. Wish the response was more optimistic. We will post your note (without identifying information) and our response to our noise blog for the benefit of others.