Home Science Environmental news LaDMA urged to enforce byelaw on noise pollution

LaDMA urged to enforce byelaw on noise pollution

Social Noise Pollution
Social Noise Pollution

Some residents of La, in Accra, have asked the La Dade-Kotopon Municipal Assembly (LaDMA) to enforce its byelaw on noise pollution.

They specifically want the Assembly to compel Penthouse, a drinking spot in the community, to operate within the recommended noise level.

The residents claimed the drinking spot, which was registered as a shop at the Assembly, had become a rooftop drinking spot, ‘disturbing the peace’ of community members opposite Z441 Kwakwranya Street, La (GL-039-7374).

According to the Assembly’s byelaws any proprietor or person in charge of a night club, restaurant, drinking bar or other places of refreshments or entertainment shall ensure that music is not played in a manner that causes a nuisance to the public.

It said a proprietor or person in charge of a night club, restaurant or other places of refreshment or entertainment shall ensure that music played on the premises was played in a manner that the music would be heard only within the confines of that premises.

Madam Awula Serwah, Secretary of the Residents Group, told the Ghana News Agency that they had complained and written letters to the Assembly concerning the violation of the byelaw but there had not been any action.

“Just this Friday, 17th June, 2022, this drinking spot played music from 21:00 hours to 14:00 hours Saturday 18th June, 2022. They even hosted night parties and this is so unbearable,” she said.

Experts say noise could cause hearing impairment, hypertension, ischemic heart disease, annoyance, and sleep disturbance.

They have also attributed changes in the immune system and birth defects to noise exposure.
During a visit to the area on Monday June 20, 2022, Miss Gladys Mensah, a resident, told the GNA that due to the noise, she had not had a sound sleep for more than 12 months.

“Ideally weekends are supposed to be enjoyed but we are enduring. It is troubling. The thought of it that working days are ending for the weekend makes me apprehensive because my inability to sleep makes me dizzy every morning. My blood pressure has increased,” she said.

One of the letters to the Assembly dated 30th December, 2021, read: “We write to complain about torture from noise pollution from drinking spots, especially the Penthouse on Kwakwaranya Street and Liberty International School, during the Christmas period. The noise is ongoing, although we have made a number of complaints.”

An official at the Assembly acknowledged receipt of complaints from the residents yet could not talk about any action to address the concerns.

The GNA gathered that the Works Department of the Assembly granted a permit for a shop for Penthouse, however, the design of the structure was changed to an open-air bar without permission.

“The Works Department has not taken action against the change of use and our information is that the Proprietor does not have a business operating permit,” a source at the Assembly said.

The source said the Environmental Health Department had done its assessment and made recommendations to byelaw enforcement officers of the Assembly but no action had been taken.
It said anytime the team visited the Penthouse they were told the owner was not present.

“The Assembly has refused to crack the whip,” the source alleged.

Ms Yemoley Yemoh, CareTaker, Penthouse, told the GNA via telephone interview that they had received some complaints and managing the sound.

The Environmental Protection Agency has pegged permissible ambient noise levels in residential areas at 55 decibels (dB) during the day and 48 dB at night, for educational and health facilities, it’s 55 dB during the day and 50 dB at night, while the noise level for areas with commercial or light industrial activities is 60 dB and 55 dB during the day and night respectively.

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