Loud Car Radio Ban Heads to Senate Floor

By: Eric Giunta | Posted: April 16, 2013 2:00 PM

Loud Music in Car

A ban on the overblaring of car stereos passed through its final Senate committee stop Monday afternoon, and now heads to the full chamber floor.

SB 634 (“Motor Vehicles”), sponsored by Sen. Wilton Simpson, R-New Port Richey, would ban the blaring of sounds that are “plainly audible” at a distance of 25 feet or more from a motor vehicle. A similar law was struck down last year by the Florida Supreme Court for being an unconstitutionally vague restriction on free speech, because that ban contained exemptions for vehicles used for political or business purposes.

Simpson's proposed revision treats all motor vehicles the same, so it should pass constitutional muster.

“Excessively loud stereos are dangerous for those on the road as well as incredibly disturbing to citizens and businesses,” Simpson told members of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

The committee declined to approve a proposed amendment by Sen. Arthenia Joyner, D-Tampa, which would have required police officers to record the race and ethnicity of alleged violators. She said her amendment was required to ensure the law would not be used as a pretext for targeting black and Latino drivers.

"We have a compelling state interest for us to do this," Joyner insisted, to no avail. "We want to make sure that there is no profiling. I want facts, and they will come about as a result of record-keeping."

The House counterpart, HB 1019, sponsored by Kevin Rader, D-Delray Beach, is already before that chamber's floor, on its second reading.

Reach Eric Giunta at esgiunta@sunshinestatenews.com and at (954) 235-9116.

Comments (4)

10:30AM APR 21ST 2013
Angie makes a good point. The Boom Car law Florida is considering passing is a good and enforceable law, and should be passed. That is an important first step in any endeavor to control motor vehicle noise, for in order for the police to be able to enforce such laws, there has to enforceable laws that that can enforce.

It is true that even a good and enforceable law cannot produce any results unless the police actively and routinely enforce it. But first things first. Let's get those enforcement tools in their tool box. The next step is to direct the police to use those tools. Don't let Boom Cars get away with assaulting you. Complain about them to the police and your local government, and urge them to enforce the law and put a stop to the booming and thumping that is unlawfully assaulting you.

I look forward to seeing Florida's Boom Car law passed and put into action.
5:34AM APR 18TH 2013
We have those laws here in Michigan but they are rarely enforced. And it's not about race. It's about quality of life and having to listen to that garbage in your neighborhoods and everywhere you go nowadays. Seems like nobody cares to complain.

I'm glad lawmakers in Florida are finally coming to their senses. Now if the police would only enforce the laws on the books it would be a better world!
Mark Roberts
8:27PM APR 17TH 2013
Now only if the idiots who run Michigan, locally and statewide, would take a hint and pass legislation here as well. It's nothing but BOOM BOOM BOOM all day and night here in Roseville Michigan, boom car capital of the world!
Susan Rocha
10:24AM APR 17TH 2013
FINALLY!! Government officials are finally listening and supporting the right to peace and quiet.

Anyone that makes this a race issue is totally ignorant. Noise is not about race. It is about quality of life and making the roads safer.

Passing this law is a HUGE step in bringing an important issue needed attention. People have the right to peace and quiet in their homes and neighborhoods.

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