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Complaints – Noise - 400209

Complaints about unreasonable noise problems from a business, neighbor, event, construction or air traffic are handled by different agencies dependent on the location of the noise problem.  Ongoing and persistent disputes between neighbors (including businesses) about noise that do not violate the Police Noise Ordinance, can be referred to an independent neighborhood mediation agency called the Community Boards

 

To report a noise problem, select from the following menu the item that best describes the location or type of noise.

Menu of Noise Problems


 

List of Resources

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General Complaints

Noise problems that do not involve permits may or may not be violations of the Noise Regulation.  Noise issues such as:

  • Barking Dog
  • People talking loudly in front of your home or business,
  • Car alarms
  • Holiday Parties
  • Minor Home Improvement Projects

In general the Noise Regulation accepts these occurrences during the day until they become unreasonable or they occur between the hours of 10pm to 7am.

On-going and persistent disputes between neighbors (including businesses) about noise that do not violate the Police Noise Ordinance, can be referred to an independent neighborhood mediation agency, called the Community Boards.  The Regulation operates by the reasonable person rule.

To report unreasonable noise problems IN PROGRESS, call Police Non-Emergency

Excerpt from Section 2915

It is unlawful for any person without justification to make or continue, or cause or permit to be made or continued, any unnecessary, excessive, or offensive noise, as defined in Section 2901.11, and including vocal or instrumental music and related sounds, whether live or reproduced mechanically by radio, television, stereo or otherwise, and which disturbs the peace or quiet of any neighborhood or which causes discomfort or annoyance of any reasonable person of normal sensitivity residing or working in the area.  Full Text of Article 29: Regulation of Noise

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Airport (SFO)

Noise problems at the San Francisco International Airport can be referred to the San Francisco Police Department Airport Station at:

  • 6-2323 from courtesy phones inside the Airport
  • 650-821-7111 from outside the Airport
  • Email address: sfocop@flysfo.com

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BART

Noise problems inside a BART Station or Train can be referred to:

  • Use the courtesy phone inside station
  • BART Police Communications Center at 510-464-7000
  • BART San Francisco Patrol at 510-464-7075 (days)

Noise problems outside the BART station (plaza, entrance and exit areas, pavement above) can be referred to the San Francisco Police Non-Emergency.

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Caltrains

Noise problems inside a Caltrains Station or Train can be referred to Caltrains Customer Service at 1-800-660-4287.

Noise problems outside the Caltrains station (plaza, entrance and exit areas, pavement above) can be referred to the San Francisco Police Non-Emergency.

 

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Vehicle Repair

It's unlawful for any person within any residential area of the City and County to repair, rebuild, or test any motor vehicle or non-stationary source in such a manner as to cause unnecessary, excessive or offensive noise.

Call Police Non-Emergency if the problem is IN PROGRESS

Per Police Code, Article 29, Section 2905


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Schools, Hospitals, Churches

It is unlawful for any person to create any unnecessary, excessive or offensive noise on any street, sidewalk, or public place adjacent to any school, institution of learning, or church while any of the same is in use, or adjacent to any hospital at any time, provided conspicuous signs are displayed in such streets, sidewalk or public place indicating the presence of a school, institution of learning, church or hospital.

Call Police Non-Emergency if the problem is IN PROGRESS

Per Police Code, Article 29, Section 2903

 

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Food Establishments

Noise problems with rooftop air conditioning units, ventilation systems, motors or compressors.

Call the Department of Public Health at 252-3800, Monday through Friday, 8am to 5pm, or call 3-1-1 to submit a service request.

Per Police Code, Article 29, Section 2909


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Garbage Collection

Complaints about noise created by the collection of garbage and recycling are handled by the collection company. This includes noise about the collection vehicles, the collectors, handling of the bins and time of day or night of the collection.

Norcal Waste is the parent company of the three companies that serve San Francisco.  Their contact telephone numbers are:

  • Sunset Scavenger: 415-330-1300
  • Golden Gate Disposal and Recycling: 415-626-4000
  • San Francisco Recycling: 415-330-1400

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Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA)

Noise problems originating from within a Golden Gate National Recreation Area location:

  • Baker Beach
  • China Beach
  • Cliff House
  • Crissy Field
  • Fort Funston
  • Fort Mason
  • Fort Point
  • Lands End
  • Ocean Beach
  • Presidio

Call 415-561-5505, 24 Hour National Park Police Non-Emergency Telephone Number if the problem is IN PROGRESS. 

Use the following web link to view GGNRA jurisdiction and boundaries:  http://www.nps.gov/goga/planyourvisit/upload/goga-folder-web2.pdf

 

 

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Delivery Trucks

Noise created by late night, overnight, early morning deliveries to a business is not illegal if they are operating within the limits of their business permits.  Complaints about possible permit or zoning violations can be directed to the Planning Department at 415-558-6377.

 

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Entertainment Businesses and Events

Noise created by private or public events inside or outside of a business that do not have a permit for such, or the conditions of the event exceed the allowances of the permit.

Call Police Non-Emergency at 415-553-0123  [Police Code, Article 29]

 

To complain about the granting of a permit for a sound system, one night event, extended hours permit:

  • Determine the location of the noise. 
    1. If in a park, open a service request to RPD and contact Park Patrol at (415) 242-6390
    2. If anywhere else in the City, contact the Entertainment Commission by calling 415-554-4539 during business hours of Monday thru Friday, 9am to 5pm, or submit a service request.

     

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    Helicopters and Airplanes

    1. Noise from aircraft landing or departing from San Francisco Airport (SFO):

    To report noise problems: 1-877-206-8290. There is a 2 minute recording on how to file a complaint.  You can also send an e-mail complaint to: sfo.noise@flysfo.com

    1. Noise NOT associated with an airport, contact:

    Western Pacific Region
    (Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Marshall Islands, Mariana Islands, Singapore, Japan (Yokota), American Somoa, Guam)
    Airports Division, AWP-600
    15000 Aviation Boulevard
    Lawndale, CA 90261
    Phone: (310) 725-3638

    Federal Aviation Administration (FAA): Aircraft Noise Issues

     

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    Muni

    Any complaint (including noise) involving a MUNI bus, train, employee, operation yard or depot, call 3-1-1 or submit a service request.

     

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    Neighbors

    Noise problems created by neighbors, such as barking dogs, loud music, parties, loud television or sound system, loud voices, or work projects between 10pm and 7am.

    Call Police Non-Emergency if the problem is IN PROGRESS

    Persistent noise problems within a multi-tenant building may be the responsibility of the Landlord. You can contact the San Francisco Rent Board for more information at 415-252-4602 Monday thru Friday; 9am to 12pm and 1pm to 4pm or submit a service request. You can visit the Rent Board at 25 Van Ness Ave, room 320, San Francisco, 94102 Monday thru Friday; 8am to 5pm.

    Rent Board Ordinance regarding Landlord responsibilities for noise

    On-going and persistent disputes between neighbors (including businesses) about noise that do not violate the Police Noise Ordinance can be referred to an independent neighborhood mediation agency known as the Community Boards.

     

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    Building Construction

    Noise between 7am to 8pm, 7 days a week, including holidays is generally permitted.  Noise must not exceed noise level of five decibels at the nearest lot line, without a special permit. Five decibels is similar to the sound of a screw gun installing screws in drywall.  There is an on-line permit system to verify if permits have been issued and if there are any pending complaints: http://dbiweb.sfgov.org/dbipts/

    IIf there is a permit on file and the noise is within the scope of the permit, then you may file a complaint; Call the Department of Building Inspections at 558-6088, Monday through Friday, 8am to 5pm, or submit a service request.  If there is NOT a permit on file you can Department of Building Inspections at 558-6088 or submit a service request and ask for an inspector regarding on-going construction without a permit.

    EXCEPTION: Per Police Code, Article 29, Section 2901.6. Emergency work shall mean work made necessary to restore property to a safe condition following a public calamity or work required to protect persons or property from an imminent exposure to danger or work by private or public utilities when restoring utility service.

    Please provide the following information on your phone call or service request:/p>

    1. Name and Telephone Number (including area code) of the complainant. NOTE: This information is required for contact/response purposes; please note in the e-mail if you wish to remain anonymous.
    2. Exact property address where the problem exists
    3. Specific statement describing the problem

    Noise between 8pm and 7am is unlawful without a special Public Works permit. If there isn't a permit, Per Police Code, Article, 29, Section 2908, call Police Non-Emergency (415-553-0123) if the problem is IN PROGRESS.

    EXCEPTION: Per Police Code, Article 29, Section 2901.6

    Emergency work shall mean work made necessary to restore property to a safe condition following a public calamity or work required to protect persons or property from an imminent exposure to danger or work by private or public utilities when restoring utility service.

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    Street/Sidewalk Construction

    Call Department of Public Works – Bureau of Street Use and Mapping at 415-554-5810, Monday through Friday, 8am to 5pm.

    EXCEPTION: Per Police Code, Article 29, Section 2901.6

    Emergency work shall mean work made necessary to restore property to a safe condition following a public calamity or work required to protect persons or property from an imminent exposure to danger or work by private or public utilities when restoring utility service.  Noise between 8pm and 7am is unlawful without a special Public Works permit. If there isn't a permit, Per Police Code, Article, 29, Section 2908, call Police Non-Emergency at 415-553-0123 if the problem is IN PROGRESS.

     

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    City College of San Francisco (CCSF)

    Noise problems originating from within the CCSF campus, Call 415-239-3200.

     

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    San Francisco State University (SFSU)

    Noise problems originating from within or immediately adjacent to the SFSU campus, Call 415-338-7200.

     

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    Tour Bus

    Noise problems originating from Unenclosed Tour Buses, Call Police Non-Emergency at 415-553-0123  [Noise Ordinance Sec 2913]

     

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    Transbay Terminal

    Noise problems originating from within the Transbay Terminal, Call 415-904-5990

     

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    University of California San Francisco (UCSF)

    Noise problems originating from UCSF campus, Call:

    • Mission Bay Station, 600 16th Street, 415-514-4043
    • Mission Center Station, 1855 Folsom Street, 415-476-8871
    • Parnassus Station, 500 Parnassus Avenue, 415-476-1414

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    University of San Francisco (USF)

    Noise problems originating from within the USF campus, Call 415-422-4222.

     

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    In Progress noise complaints are handled by the Police Non-Emergency Telephone Number 415-553-0123, 24 hours a day.

    • Not all In Progress Noise complaints will be responded to if:
    • Higher priority police reports need to be responded to
    • The noise problem is not in violation of the Noise Ordinance as detailed in Police Code: Article 29, Section 2900.
    • A valid permit has been issued to the person or business causing the noise and the terms and conditions of the permit has not been violated. Complaints about the rendering of the permit and its terms and conditions would be handled by the City department that issued the permit.

    On-going and persistent disputes between neighbors (including businesses) about noise that do not violate the Police Noise Ordinance can be referred to an independent neighborhood mediation agency called the Community Boards.

     

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Last updated: 10/16/2013 2:18:32 PM