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Loud pipes save lives - Oakland cops say so

Discussion in 'Moto Club' started by fnfalman, Jun 16, 2008.


  1. fnfalman

    fnfalman
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    http://www.cyrilhuzeblog.com/2008/0...-wants-louder-pipes-on-its-harleys/#more-1509

    Another very interesting article forwarded by Rogue.
    Over in Oakland they like it loud - so loud that all 45 of the Police Department’s Harley-Davidson motorcycles have been equipped with shiny new tailpipes, at a cost of $500 apiece, to rev up their roar. It seems the cops just didn’t feel safe on toned-down bikes. “There’s an old motorcycle adage that you are heard before you are seen,” said Deputy Chief Dave Kozicki, explaining the department’s decision to toss the bikes’ muted factory-issued mufflers in favor of the more high-volume pipes. Kozicki cited an accident three months ago in which an Oakland officer riding a toned-down cycle was struck by a motorist who said he hadn’t heard the officer approaching.But some City Hall insiders, as well as motorcycle cops elsewhere, said the safety argument is a stretch. Even the folks at the national Motorcycle Industry Council, which represents all the big bike manufacturers, were unaware of any safety benefits from louder mufflers.
    “We encourage all motorcycle riders to keep the original low sound levels that meet the … federal sound limit of 80 decibels,” said industry spokesman Mike Mount. “It would seem counterintuitive that a law enforcement agency would go against federal standards.”
    Ironically, it was just a short time back that Oakland police were called upon to crack down on noisy motorists who had modified their auto mufflers to make a whistling screech. The “whistle tip” pipes were eventually outlawed under state law. Oakland’s cops had a long tradition of riding their Harley-Davidsons with the modified, louder tail pipes, earning them the nickname “Rolling Thunder.” But after an officer complained about a loss of hearing and others around town questioned whether the police force was violating the very noise standards it was supposed to enforce, the department brass ordered a switch to the quieter stock mufflers.
    According to Kozicki, the decibel drop sparked a chorus of complaints from other officers, who said they felt less safe. So last year the department launched a $1,200 study in conjunction with the city’s risk management division to determine whether A) the louder motorcycles contributed to officers’ safety, B) were detrimental to their hearing, and C) complied with noise standards. Kozicki acknowledged that whatever safety-related findings the study produced were largely anecdotal. Still, after everything was taken into consideration, the department concluded “it was in the best interest of the officers to put more-audible pipes back on,” Kozicki said.
    Hence, all 30 of the department’s Harleys were sent down to the central maintenance yard for a muffler makeover, at a cost of about $15,000, according to City Hall insiders. Another 15 newly purchased motorcycles were ordered with the louder pipes, though at no extra charge. Oakland officials acknowledge that the noisy pipes, when tested, averaged 93 decibels - well above the federal legal noise limit, according to the Motorcycle Industry Council.
     

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  2. OGW

    OGW
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    One of my bikes is a (loud) Harley and I have yet to see how anyone in a car or truck with the windows up could hear me coming. I have just as many idiots crowd my space, pull out in front of me, turn left in front of me, whatever, as I do on my quiet BMW. The only thing loud pipes _might_ prevent is hitting a pedestrian.

    I wonder if the PD will be paying workman's comp claims for hearing loss for the motor officers in the future. I wear ear plugs no matter what I ride, but I'll bet cops don't.
     

  3. wolfy692005

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    lets look at the obvious. The Harley's all have pipes on the right side (sept some baggers with one on each) but if you are in the right lane and a car starts to come into you lane from your left, louder pipes probably will not help you at all.. however if you are in the left lane and a car is on your right, that is when louder pipes do help.. Will they help all the time, no. Will they help some of the time, probably. I personally think it is more of a battle to "do what we want" or "you have to do this" more than it is ever about safety.
    i have had loud bikes and quiet.. i have no preference. I do wear ear plugs all the time because the wind messes with my ears big time.
     
  4. popnfresh

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    dauernd wachsam

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    Loud gear saves more lives, than loud pipes.
     
  5. Fred Hansen

    Fred Hansen
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    Liberal Bane

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  6. Norman

    Norman
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    Non nobis
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  7. norton

    norton
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    No, no wait.
    Its Loud Pipes Suck
    Helmets Save lives

    How many stickers can I sell at Daytona next year:supergrin:
     
  8. davew83

    davew83
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    hhhhhhhhmmmmmmm

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  9. HollowHead

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    Yeah, knee dragging on public streets is really safe and indicative of skill. HH
     
  10. Fred Hansen

    Fred Hansen
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    Liberal Bane

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    Don't be hatin'!

    :rofl::rofl::rofl:
     
  11. davew83

    davew83
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    hhhhhhhhmmmmmmm

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    Who said anything about dragging knees on public streets?
     
  12. HollowHead

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    My apologies. I somehow thought that your avitar and t-shirt photo indicated that sportbike riders were somehow better riders than Harley riders. HH
     
  13. fnfalman

    fnfalman
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    But what's with the mohawk?
     
  14. m21att1

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    They aren't????:whistling:







    just kidding... don't get all worked up...
     
  15. Texas357

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    When there be a ruling that un-suppressed firearms violate OSHA noise standards?
     
  16. fnfalman

    fnfalman
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    When shooting firearms is a part of work.:whistling:
     
  17. davew83

    davew83
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    hhhhhhhhmmmmmmm

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    Depends on the rider, the shirt is meant as a joke, and a slam on the star bucks riders that buy a Harley or Japanese copy to try and look tough. Even though they spend 20k on a bike and gear to look cool and play grab ass at bike night or at starbucks, the closest thing to a long ride they will ever see is the 20 minute ride down the highway to bike night, and the curviest road they will ever see is a interstate ramp. Plenty of the guys I race with also own either a cruiser, or some sort of touring bike.

    As far as the avatar, thats me in Jennings Florida in March, about 6 hours before I broke my ankle and ended my season.

    My finaly point is I don't hate Harleys, just the riders that only buy it to look tough and suddenly they are billy bad ass biker, and can't even change the oil in it.
     
  18. davew83

    davew83
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    hhhhhhhhmmmmmmm

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    I dunno, just the design on the shirt. You can get one too at www.pjsparts.com
     
  19. windplex

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    Well peg dragin certainly doesnt show skill;)
     
  20. windplex

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