European Commission calls for compliance with noise law

The European Commission is sending formal requests to Germany, Italy, Greece and Portugal to implement an EU directive that limits noise emissions from outdoor equipment.

The equipment covered includes chainsaws, concrete mixers, cranes, dumper trucks, hydraulic excavators, refuse collection vehicles and garden equipment. Member states should have adopted the legislation by 3 July 2001, but the Commission has received no notification that these four nations have done so.

If the countries fail to respond to the Commission’s request within two months, the Commission states that it may decide to bring the case before the European Court of Justice.

“Excessive noise exposure is damaging to human health,” commented Environment Commissioner Margot Wallström. “It is disappointing that some Member States have still not fulfilled their commitments with regard to regulating noise-emissions. I urge them to bring their laws into line with European requirements as soon as possible.”

According to the directive, outdoor equipment can only be placed on the market if it satisfies certain requirements on noise emissions.

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