Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Tampa residents turn up volume on complaints about loud car stereos

TAMPA — That boom-boom-pow blasting from your car stereo might sound great to you, but nearby drivers say it rattles their brains.

They want the ability to turn you in to the police.

"It would be more effective if the citizens who live in the area work with the Police Department," Clay Daniels, who lives in East Tampa, told the City Council on Thursday. "We can no longer just let it go on. People are suffering."

More than 400 people signed a petition supporting a program that would let residents give police the license plate numbers of cars playing music that can be heard 25 feet away, which violates state law. Police would then notify owners they might be breaking noise rules. St. Petersburg has a similar program.

David Head, owner of a battery sales business in East Tampa, urged the council to follow St. Petersburg's lead. Sometimes, he said, it gets so noisy he can't carry on a telephone conversation.

"We combat the loud music problem on a daily basis," he said.

But the council instead voted to ask police Chief Steve Hogue to start cracking down.

That came after hearing from Tampa police Maj. Mark Hamlin, who said he worries about adding new duties to the Police Department amid budget cuts.

St. Petersburg's complaint program, launched by its neighborhood services program in February 2008 and adopted by police in March 2009, hasn't been effective, Hamlin said. The complaints sometimes contain inaccurate information, and a letter from police isn't likely to deter.

"We find a lot of times the stereo systems are actually worth more than the cars themselves," Hamlin said.

A $101 fine, which can be issued if an officer hears the music, has a much greater impact, Hamlin said. People irritated by the loud music should call police so an officer can go to the scene and possibly write a ticket, he added.

St. Petersburg police spokesman Bill Proffitt said Thursday the program works. From February 2008 through April 2009, there were 600 complaints about car stereos but only 121 in 2009.

"I know one individual received a couple letters from us, and she called the other day and said, 'Okay, I get it.' Maybe it took a couple letters to realize it was a violation of state law," he said. "The program does have a positive effect. But actually how much, we're not going to know."

Michael Rivera, an insurance agent from Town 'N Country, said he was disappointed the Tampa City Council didn't take stronger action. Frequent noise makes it difficult for him to do business on the phone.

"Things just don't get done," he said. "It's always disappointing."

Janet Zink can be reached at jzink@sptimes.com or (813) 226-3401.

Tampa residents turn up volume on complaints about loud car stereos 06/04/09 [Last modified: Thursday, June 4, 2009 10:03pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Comedian and activist Dick Gregory dies at 84

    Nation

    The comedian Dick Gregory rose to national prominence in the early 1960s as a black satirist whose audacious style of humor was biting, subversive and topical, mostly centered on current events, politics and above all, racial tensions. His trademark was the searing punchline.

    Dick Gregory, a comedian, activist and author, died Saturday. [Tribune News Service, 2011]
  2. Winter Haven police investigating armed robbery at Dollar General

    Crime

    WINTER HAVEN — Police are investigating an armed robbery Friday night of a Dollar General store on W Lake Ruby Drive.

  3. Rowdies settle for draw at home

    Soccer

    ST. PETERSBURG — The good news for the Rowdies is that they still haven't lost a game at Al Lang Stadium since late April. The bad news is they had to settle for a 1-1 tie against Ottawa on Saturday night in front of 6,710 sweaty fans.

  4. Bats come to life, but Rays' freefall continues (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG —The six runs seemed like a ton, just the second time the Rays had scored that many in a game during their numbing two-plus-weeks stretch of offensive impotency, and amazingly, the first time at the Trop in nearly two months.

    Lucas Duda connects for a two-run home run in the sixth, getting the Rays within 7-5. A Logan Morrison home run in the ninth made it 7-6, but Tampa Bay couldn’t complete the comeback.
  5. 'Free speech rally' cut short after massive counterprotest

    Nation

    BOSTON — Thousands of demonstrators chanting anti-Nazi slogans converged Saturday on downtown Boston in a boisterous repudiation of white nationalism, dwarfing a small group of conservatives who cut short their planned "free speech rally" a week after a gathering of hate groups led to bloodshed in Virginia.

    Thousands of people march against a “free speech rally” planned Saturday in Boston. About 40,000 people were in attendance.