Noise pollution from garden shredders and Co.

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Whether there is noise from garden tools depends on the strength, duration, type, frequency, regularity and predictability of the noise level. According to the Federal Court, it depends on the feeling of a reasonable average person and what is to be expected. Time also plays a role: for example, higher noise levels are permitted during the day than at night from 10 pm to 6 am. Which local rest periods, for example, also at lunchtime, apply to you, you will find out at the responsible public order office. Further restrictions on the use of garden tools can result, for example, from the Equipment and Machine Noise Ordinance.

Music about the volume of the room must not be tolerated by neighbors (Amtsgericht Dieburg, judgment of 14.09.2016, Az. 20 C 607/16). The slamming of car doors is to be accepted as a rule, since it is not a continuous noise (district court Lueneburg, judgment of 11.12.2001, Az. 5 S 60/01). As far as the noise is within the limits of the Technical Instructions for Protection against Noise (TA Lärm), there is no injunctive relief. In case of construction noise from neighboring property may be a rent reduction into consideration (Berlin Regional Court, judgment of 16.06.2016, Az. 67 S 76/16). On the other hand, one must usually accept child noise, for example noise from a playground or a football pitch (§ 22 (1a) BImSchG).

So you can measure the noise

Often one appreciates the noise of neighbors louder than it is objective. How should one measure the volume, however? A professional noise level meter is usually not available. There are now apps with which a noise level measurement is possible. The District Court Dieburg (judgment of 14.09.2016, Az. 20 C 607/16 (23)) has decided that a noise measurement by popular smartphone apps in conjunction with a witness is sufficient as evidence. The Court considers that such noise measurements can be used to assess the noise level.

noise level measuring device

How high the noise is really, can be determined with a noise level meter

The same applies if a breach of obligation, which provides for a fixed decibel limit, is violated. If you yourself are a victim of noise pollution, you should keep a noise journal. The diary should record the date, time, type and duration of the noise, the measured volume (db (A)), the location of the measurement, the circumstances of the measurement (closed / opened windows / doors) and witnesses.

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