As motorcycles roar, Boston police must rev up enforcement of noise ordinance

August 24, 2011

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THANK YOU for Scot Lehigh’s Aug. 12 column on loud motorcycles in Boston (“Summertime, and the living is noisy,’’ Op-ed). Lehigh’s ongoing attention to this issue is greatly appreciated.

My husband and I were walking on Boylston Street this summer when about a half-dozen bikers came by. The noise was so great that pedestrians were covering their ears. Two Boston police officers stood chatting on the sidewalk near the Boston Public Library. We pointed out the bikers to the officers, and said we were aware of an ordinance against it. The officers had a difficult time smothering their grins as they shrugged and said it was not an enforceable law. They did nothing.

What other laws do Boston police ignore? Can they be counted on to respond to a robbery or assault, or are they too busy trying to decide which laws to enforce and which are unenforceable?

It would have taken little effort, given the slow traffic flow, for these officers to ticket the lawbreakers. Officers who deliberately fail to enforce the law should not be in a position to continue policing the city.

Susan O’Brien
Sharon, N.H.