While noise is part of everyday life, from playing music, entertaining or working around the home, it’s important we are respectful of our neighbours and minimise unnecessary noisy disruptions.
While often noise issues can be resolved by a respectful discussion, sometimes excessive noise occurring at a frequency, time of day and for a duration can unreasonably affect the health and amenity of surrounding residents and can be considered an offence.
The Environmental Protection (Noise) Regulations 1997 outlines the permitted decibel levels for noise emissions, or in the case of equipment, where its usage does not meet certain conditions.
Under the Environmental Protection Act 1986, sometimes legal action such as fines, notices and seizure of equipment can be taken. Both the City and the police have authority to take action under these laws.
Noise legislation provides exemptions for certain types of noise such as construction noise, festivals and "specified equipment".
Approved construction hours are Monday to Saturday between 7am and 7pm, with Sundays and public holidays excluded.
Construction work outside of approved hours are subject to approval by the Environmental Health section. Complete the application form and submit via email: email@example.com with your application fee. If paying by credit card, please contact Customer Service on 9186 8555.
Visit the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation for more information on construction noise.
Reporting a noise complaint
To report a loud party after hours, or a burglar alarm that has been sounding for more than 30 minutes, please contact the police on 131 444.
To report noise from concerts or construction companies which had provided prior notification, please contact the relevant promoter or construction company. If you had not received prior notice of the planned interruption, contact the City of Karratha on 9186 8555.
To report aircraft noise, contact Air Services Australia Noise Complaints and Information Services Hotline on 1800 802 584.
To report traffic noise along major roads, contact Main Roads Western Australia on 138 138.
Tips for talking to neighbours
Very often the best approach for dealing with a neighbour who is causing you concern is to talk to them and work together to resolve the problem. Often people will be unaware that they are disturbing you and discussing this problem early on can help a neighbour understand your concerns and be more considerate in the future.
If you decide to speak with your neighbour, plan what you are going to say ahead of time, and remember a pleasant and calm approach is most likely to achieve the desired outcome.
Choose the best time to visit your neighbour and explain how the noise is distressing you and if possible, offer solutions.
It’s understandable if you don’t feel comfortable approaching your neighbour directly. You may consider leaving a polite, addressed note in their letterbox as a first step.