The BC Coalition of Motorcyclists (BCCOM) is calling on the Vancouver Police Department to change the way its conducting road block noise checks on motorcyclists as the haphazard method currently being used unfairly targets law-abiding riders.
Since 1985, the BC Coalition of Motorcyclists and its 6,000 members have worked closely with BC Ferries, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC), the provincial government as well as the City of Vancouver and other BC municipalities to advocate on behalf of BC motorcyclists and address issues such as motorcycle noise and safety.
In 1996, BCCOM sat on the board of the Vancouver Noise Task Force, which considered a ban on motorcycles in the West End along with restrictions against leaf blowers, car alarms, lawnmowers and garbage collection. In 1997, the Task Force recommended the City work with BCCOM to educate riders about noise rather than impose a crackdown.
While BCCOM has worked diligently since then to raise awareness of noise issues among motorcyclists, the Motor Vehicle Branch has developed no standards for testing motorcycle noise and riders in BC still have no place in to take their vehicles to determine if their exhaust system is legal.
“We understand the noise concerns of citizens in downtown Vancouver and throughout the Lower Mainland, and that’s why we’ve never supported the use of “illegal pipes,” said Adele Tompkins, Executive Director, BCCOM. “However, forcing riders, who were riding responsibly, to submit to random checks where they’re ordered to rev their engines to test their noise potential, is unfair. Not only are riders also being held accountable for additional ambient noise recorded by hand held decibel meters, worse yet, they’re being treated as criminals when in fact they were operating their motorcycles responsibly and respectfully.
“The fact is, most motorcyclists in BC are law-abiding doctors, dentists, lawyers, fire fighters, and people from all walks of life, who are united by their love of motorcycling and are just as concerned about excessive noise as the non-riding public. Although well intentioned, we collectively call on the VPD to focus on its efforts only on those motorcyclists who are actually causing the noise problem.”
B.C. Coalition of Motorcyclists