Maidstone Borough Council can assist with problems of noise pollution. Below is a summary of the Council’s Noise Information Policy which is a guide about how complaints of noise are dealt with. Further information can be obtained by telephoning the Environmental Enforcement Team on 01622 602202.
When a complaint is received a letter is sent to the people responsible for the noise that has been complained about and the letter will ay that a complaint has been made. An authorised officer will examine the evidence and decide if further investigation is needed. The person who made the complaint (the complainant) will be sent a letter and a incident record sheet and asked to fill in the incident record sheet for two to four weeks and then return it to Maidstone Borough Council.
If the complainant does not fill in and return the incident record sheet, it is assumed that the noise has been reduced to a reasonable level and no further action is needed. Alternatively, when the completed incident record sheet is received an authorised officer will examine it and start an investigation. The investigation may involve visits to the complainant’s home and using monitoring or recording equipment.
At the end of the investigation, the officer reviews the evidence with a colleague and will decide whether the noise is causing a statutory nuisance, taking account of the volume, time of day etc. If the noise is considered to be a statutory nuisance, Maidstone Borough Council will serve a ‘noise abatement notice’ on the people responsible for the noise. This notice explains that if the situation does not improve, further legal action may be taken. If the noise is not considered to be a statutory nuisance, the complainant will be advised and no further action will be taken.
If the person responsible for the noise does not keep to any noise abatement notice issues, legal action will commence. The complainant will hae to provide a witness statement and give evidence in a magistrates’ court. The person responsible cold be fined (up to £5000 for noise from a home and up to £20,000 for noise from a business premises) and be sent to prison. They could also have to pay a penalty for every day that the statutory noise nuisance continues.