A dispute between a local business and nearby residents about the noise levels produced when flushing marine boat engines has taken another turn.
Last Thursday Port Augusta City Council’s community planner Tung Pham went to My Car Wash and conducted some noise level tests, both on site and over the back fence of a neighbouring property.
The tests involved two outboard motors being flushed and revved at half rate at the same time.
Mr Pham said the official results of the test would not be available until later this week and therefore declined to comment.
Initially users of the car wash were allowed to flush their outboard boat motors, however responding to noise complaints from nearby residents, the council banned the activity.
The business owners have since contacted the council questioning why the service is not allowed.
The council’s initial response was that the activity was outside of the initial development application.
Business owner Kevin Bussey said he wanted the noise level tests done to prove that the flushing of marine engines didn’t break the Environment Protection (Noise) Policy 2007.
“I don’t think it’s an issue, I think it’s something that’s good for tourism in the town and certainly shouldn’t be a noise issue,” he said.
“It (the noise levels) was lower than a truck going past on Victoria Parade; it was lower than B-Doubles.”
Mr Bussey said the business was happy to be flexible to accommodate nearby residents.
“We can be flexible here, we are happy to put muffs on and wash motors from 7am-7pm and then take the muffs off and put them away so people can’t use it,” he said.
“And have signage there that says ‘when you flush your motors only at idle, no revving of motors while flushing’.”
Kathryn Moyse is a nearby resident who is opposed to the flushing of marine engines and has started a petition around town.
“It shouldn’t be allowed to happen and if council says it can’t happen it shouldn’t,” she said.
“I’ve been doing a petition and I have over 200 signatures.”
Ms Moyse wasn’t satisfied with the noise test that was undertaken by the council.
“It’s not the small boats, it’s the big boats [I am worried about],” she said.
“I want the Environmental Protection Agency conducting the tests.”
The council is still trying to resolve the issue.