Nuisance noise caused by neighbours makes up the vast majority of noise complaints in Ireland. However, there are regulations governing their actions. The main regulations come under the Environmental Protection Agency Act 1992 (Noise) Regulations 1994.
Private Rented Tenants:
Those in private rented accommodation are dealt with by the Residential Tenancies Act 2004. The act helps impose minimum obligations on landlords and tenants of private residential properties including:
- Tenants are not to engage, or allow visitors to engage, in anti-social behaviour, which disturbs the peace
- Landlords must enforce these tenant obligations
There is also leverage in the act for people to complain to the Private Residential Tenancies Board, if they feel the landlord is not acting accordingly. Since December 2004, all privately-rented properties must be registered with the PRTB. You can check if a property is registered by contacting them.
Local Authority Tenants:
Local authority tenants usually have regulations on their behaviour written into their tenancy agreement. This is the legal basis of the relationship between the local authority and its tenants. Local authorities' power, in this case, comes under Section 62 of the Housing Act 1966. They have the authority to secure an eviction, where a tenant has breached the conditions of their tenancy agreement.
The first point of contact, if you have a complaint regarding a local authority tenant, is your local authority.
Nuisance noise caused by a private home owner comes under other regulations. In this case, the person experiencing the noise nuisance will have to avail of the powers of the Noise Regulations. They state that any individual person, or a local authority, may complain to a District Court seeking an Order to deal with the noise nuisance.
For faulty alarms on commercial premises the local authority should be notified. If the alarm is on private property, the occupiers should be notified and only then - if the problem persists - can it be treated as a neighbourhood noise problem.
Some local authorities have issued guidelines that owners/occupiers of alarmed property should nominate at least two keyholders who can be contacted in the event of the activation of the alarm. Local authorities may also serve a notice under the Environmental Protection Agency Act, 1992. New, tougher measures were proposed by the previous Government, such as giving power to the Gardaí to turn off alarms - on the outside of premises - that are causing annoyance.
The Dublin Airport Authority release reports on noise from the aviation industry in Ireland, see the latest one here.
No standards have been set for the operation of car alarms.
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