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How to make police listen to your noise complaint

Nobody wants to disturb the police on matters that are not urgent. Unfortunately in Australia however, the police are the authority responsible for managing amplified noise and the associated complaints. This works well for parties, especially if they begin to get out of control or if there is an imminent threat of violence.

It also means that police have to take calls from all the other elevated noise problems, such as a loud radio or local band practice.

Despite the police operating off a sophisticated job prioritisation system, you will need to contact the police if you want a noise disturbance dealt with. Of course, urgent matters (accidents, emergencies and serious crime) will always prioritise, and rightly so.

Often you will find your complaint is ignored. It sometimes takes perseverance, but it doesn't mean you should be worried about letting the police know about a noise issue.

Below are some steps that will help you get Queensland Police to deal with a noise complaint:

1. Call the police and get them to issue a noise abatement. 2. If the noise continues within the duration of the abatement (usually 96 hours) immediately notify the police to return to the address. 3. Only then can they take definitive action against the person making the noise.

Calling once a week doesn't give Police the opportunity to resolve the problem. It has to be within the timing of the noise abatement notice. This is a weakness of the current legislation - it allows noise makers to continue making disruptive noise for years without being caught. It falls back on the complainant to take legal action themselves. An expensive, slow and risky prospect. NoiseNet can help in working with the Police and/or legal representatives by providing evidence of long-term noise breaches through physical monitoring from a complainants property. Get in touch if you need help in resolving a noise complaint of any type.

For more information about noise restriction times where you live, please see the noise curfew times here:

NSW: Music is prohibited between midnight and 8am on Friday, Saturday and any day preceding a public holiday. It's restricted from 10pm to 8am on any other day.

ACT: In residential areas of the ACT, noise can't exceed 45 dB between 7am and 10pm or 35 dB between 10pm and 7am. QLD: There is no time-based noise restriction. Instead, excessive noise can be reported at any time of day. VIC: Loud music must be switched off between 10pm and 7am Monday to Thursday. On Fridays, the curfew is 11pm. Music is restricted before 9am and after 11pm on Saturdays, and before 9am and after 10pm on Sundays.

SA: Noise complaints are subjectively assessed and not governed by time-based restrictions. In general, music should not exceed the volume of ordinary background noise by more than 8 dB. TAS: Loud music is permissible from 7am to 10pm between Monday and Thursday, and from 7am to midnight on Friday. It may be played from 9am to midnight on Saturdays. On Sundays, it is unrestricted between 10am and 10pm. WA: The definition of 'excessive noise' is left to the police. In general, music shouldn't be audible within habitable rooms of a neighbour's house between 7pm and 7am Monday to Saturday, or 7pm and 9am on a Sunday. NT: Residents are advised to restrict noisy music to between 7pm and 7am Monday to Saturday, and 9am and 6pm on Sundays or public holidays.

Source: Queensland Police Service website: Tablelands overnight wrap Tuesday, Feb 13.

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