Officer fines drivers who pump up the volume

Posted: Thursday, May 20, 2010

FAIRBANKS - Drivers showing off their super-sized stereos and subwoofers on the streets of Fairbanks had best steer clear of Josh Lambert.

The Fairbanks patrol officer has become something of a one-man noise-control unit in recent weeks, issuing about a dozen citations to motorists who pump up the volume. Lambert says he doesn't mind loud music, but there comes a point where drivers with "ridiculously loud" stereos become a nuisance. And those drivers will be ticketed for breaking city code.

"When I'm sitting in my car driving down the road with my windows up, the air conditioning on, listening to chatter on the radio and I can hear your music or bass while you're driving down the road, it's definitely too loud," Lambert said.

City code states that if you can hear music 50 feet outside the vehicle, it's too loud, Lambert said. The fine is $50 for a first offense, $300 for a second offense within six months and $1,000 for a third violation if it's within a year of the first.

Lambert said violators raise the volume morning, noon or night. But as one would expect, it's primarily a spring and summer phenomenon.

On Sunday, Lambert just finished writing a citation to the owner of a loud stereo system when he heard another coming down the road. The driver stopped at a video store, and Lambert pulled him over when he left.

He acknowledges that loud music on the roads is a pet peeve and he enforces it more than other officers.

"I'm probably one of the only guys that enforces it," he said. "Different (cops) have different styles."

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