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BAGUIO CITY, Philippines – Baguio City residents who suffered through their neighbors’ loud karaoke nights in the past can now heave a collective sigh of relief.
The city approved this week Baguio councilor Edgar Avila’s “Silent Night” ordinance that penalizes obnoxious karaoke singers and other noisemakers.
Under the new ordinance, any resident can now report to their barangay (village) officials “excessive, unnecessary, or unusual loud sounds from audio devices” that can be heard from 10 pm to 5 am within residential areas and public streets.
Barangay officials may then call the police to look into the situation.
Avila, whose family owns a music school, defined this particular noise as “when the volume destroys the serenity and comfort of people in any dwelling or residence, or when the volume is louder than necessary for the convenient hearing of the persons who are in the place in which audio devices such as karaoke, videoke, amplifiers, and musical instruments, among others, are operated.”
He said not only do these dissonant sounds cause sleepless nights, but they also, at times, lead to disputes “that even result in violence, injury, and damage to property.”
After a resident reports the noise, the police will first inform the noisemakers to tone down. But if their noise gets displeasing, or the noisemakers become rowdy, the police can mete out the following penalties:
- 1st offense: a fine of P1,000 or imprisonment of up to 6 months, or both
- 2nd offense: P3,000
- 3rd offense: P5,000
People creating loud sound, music, or noise in places within 200 meters of schools, places of worship, and hospitals will be automatically fined.
If there is an upcoming birthday karaoke or barangay fiesta, one has to secure a permit from the Punong Barangay 5 days before the event.
During the event, the volume of the audio device must be kept within the acceptable level, and even then, the loud music will only be allowed until midnight. – Rappler.com