Police to keep the peace and quiet by citing loud vehicles

Port chief says officers will focus on ‘extreme’ noise makers in light of complaints
By 
KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM
Ozaukee Press staff

Port Washington Police Chief Kevin Hingiss said Monday that he is working on a plan to have officers ticket noisy vehicles in the city after receiving complaints from residents concerned about the situation.

Hingiss said officers won’t stop every motorcycle or car that’s loud, but he is working on a plan to direct officers to “go after the ones that are extreme.”     

Hingiss made his comments at the Police and Fire Commission meeting after Don Voigt, 434 N. Wisconsin St., told the commission he is disturbed by the sound of motorcycles with non-stock mufflers, and he said he’s not the only one.

“Citizens are looking for peace and quiet,” he said.

Voigt said he has spoken to Hingiss about the issue, and the problem has gotten better but he’s still concerned.

“It has become a little quieter,” Voigt said, but he asked if the city could come up with a way to regulate the offending cycles.

“I don’t have any magical solution and I’m not saying ban motorcycles,” he emphasized.

Commission Chairman Rick Nelson said he sat outside Heritage Printing on Wisconsin Street recently and heard the noise.

“I understand the problem,” he said, especially as motorcycles go up and down St. Mary’s Hill. “I’m sympathetic.”

Many of the offending motorcycles have been customized to purposely make excessive noise, Nelson said. 

Hingiss said his new policy won’t just target motorcyclists but all excessively loud motorists, but added that just because a vehicle makes noise doesn’t mean the driver will get a ticket.

“We’re not going to go after everybody,” Hingiss stressed.

He noted that loud music and loud mufflers are different situations, and said officers will likely give out citations that can be dismissed if the motorcycle is fixed within a specific time frame to eliminate the sound.

“It’s something, and it lets people know we’re serious about this,” Hingiss said, adding, “There are always people who go to extremes.”

Ald. Dan Benning said he has been contacted by constituents concerned about the sounds of engine as semi-tractor trailers head into the city on Sauk Drive.

“I can’t say that’s been an issue in the city until now,” Hingiss said, adding that increased development in the area has likely forced the issue.

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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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