Saturday, June 30, 2012

Maryland Boat Noise Regulations

New boat noise regulations affect boaters on Deep Creek Lake, the Bohemia River, the Elk and Northeast Rivers and tributaries, and the Maryland portion of the Chesapeake & Delaware (C&D) Canal. The State is providing citizens with free tests to determine if their boat is within the legal limit.

The Maryland Natural Resources Police (NRP) will be conducting courtesy tests so boaters may determine if their vessel meets regulation guidelines.

Testing dates, times and locations are being scheduled and will be listed at  and

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) established the regulations, which went into effect November 28, 2011, because of increasing citizen concern in these areas.

For the 2012 boating season, regulations prohibit boats with mufflers and muffler cut-out systems from exceeding the following noise levels.

* For engines manufactured before January 1, 1993, the noise level may not exceed 90 decibels (a).

* Those manufactured on or after January 1, 1993, the noise level may not exceed 88 decibels (a).

Boats manufactured after January 1990 must operate with a continuous muffler system and and may not operate a device that bypasses, reduces or eliminates the effectiveness of a muffler or noise suppression device or system.

The full regulation is located in COMAR 08.18.03 and may be accessed from the Maryland Division of State Documents website.

source: MD DNR

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