EPA begs police force for noise nuisance info

Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 July 2023, 17:11 by Denis Chabrol

EPA Environmental Officer Ladonna Kissoon.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has appealed to the Guyana Police Force to submit information on noise nuisance complaints as the two agencies team up in their fight against that problem.

EPA Environmental Officer, Ladonna Kissoon told a recently-held symposium for senior police officers that her agency needed such monthly noise nuisance complaints records for  use by a Technical Working Group. “Over the months that we have been meeting those records have not been submitted,” she said.

Ms Kissoon said if the police force submits that information to the EPA, it would assist in going after perpetrators. “It helps us to know where to go, where the enforcement is needed in and around Guyana so this is my plea to you guys: just ensure that you tabulate that information and submit so that it reaches the Technical Working Group and we’re able to work towards resolving those issues,” she said.

Superintendent of Police, Shellon Daniels said, “the police don’t necessarily have to depend 100 percent on a victim statement to charge,” she said. Ms Daniels explained that the police could rely on its own observations at the source of noise nuisance and so arrest the perpetrator.

The police officer said the GPF could continue to collaborate in addressing noise nuisance. Sources of noise include music carts, noisy nighttime construction activities, and loud music from vehicles. The effects could include sleeplessness, hearing difficulties and the scaring away of dogs.

The EPA official cited the adverse impact of playing loud music- sound clashes- near the seashore on birds and fishes. “A lot of persons, if you notice, would go behind Marriott and would open up their cars and they play their music. One of the things nobody ever stop to notice is that when they do that, the birds don’t come there, the fishes don’t swim all the way up to the shore and that is because of the artificial introduction of noise into the environment,” she said.

At least 480 police officers had been trained by the EPA to use and calibrate noise meters.

Under the summary jurisdiction act, persons found guilty of noise nuisance could be fined up to GY$20,000 and first-time offenders , who ate charged under the EPA Act, could be fined up to a maximum of GY$500,000 on conviction, GY$750,000 on second conviction and then possibly losing their licences.