Spanish city of Seville bans outdoor noise

Seville sports fans will have to keep their cheering toned down, children will have to play quietly, and car enthusiasts can't rev their engines to impress their friends after Seville passed regulations to make the town a little more quiet.
By Aileen Graef  |  July 28, 2014 at 3:30 PM
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SEVILLE, Spain, July 28 (UPI) -- A city in Spain is trying to get some peace and quiet after passing several restrictions in an attempt to rid the town of all outdoor noise.

Quiet advocates in the city have been pushing for the regulations for a while. In a petition signed by 4,000 people last year, they asked, "Can you imagine what's it's like to have 100 people under your window screaming as they watch a football match? Our children can't perform well at school. When we leave for work in the morning we're already exhausted."

The regulations passed Friday ban: domino games outside, singing in the street, playing loud music as you drive, unnecessary revving of the engine, a car alarm sounding for more than three minutes, bars with outdoor televisions, rolling kegs and pulling chairs on outdoor patios, serving bar patrons who are standing up outdoors, and even "excessively loud" conversations can earn Seville residents a fine.

The fines for noise violations range from €300 ($403) to €300,000 ($403,213).

"It's a balance between the right of residents to get a little rest and the development of economic activities," city councillor Maximiliano Vílchez told reporters.

Proponents of the regulations believe that the new rules are not enough. They still take issue with karaoke bars and nightclubs being allowed to be next to homes and with no noise regulations.

Religious processions and the annual parades are exempt from the restrictions. Enforcement of the bans will rest with police officers, who will have to rely on their personal judgement about what is too loud.

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