Apprehending officers to have decibel meters

Last week, news broke out that the City of Manila might soon have an “Anti-muffler” ordinance, much to the dismay of many, especially motorcycle riders.

While some poked fun at Ordinance 8145’s name, many expressed concern that the upcoming Manila City ordinance will only target motorcycle riders, as well as apprehend riders subjectively, without even using proper measuring tools.

Manila councilor clarifies ‘Anti-muffler’ ordinance image has already reached to the office of councilor Joel “JTV” Villanueva, the principal author of the ordinance, to secure a copy of Ordinance No. 8145. According to him, the Anti-muffler Ordinance now only awaits Mayor Isko Moreno’s signature to finally become a bonafide city ordinance.

During the course of our conversation, Coun. JTV took the time to clarify a few specifics about the upcoming ordinance.

Hindi lang po pang motorcycle yung ordinance. ALL motor vehicles po kaya lahat po kasama at may guidelines po ito. (The ordinance is not for motorcycles only. All vehicles are included and the ordinance will have guidelines),” said Coun. JTV to

No decibel meter, no ticket

Manila councilor clarifies ‘Anti-muffler’ ordinance image

Some motorcycle riders have expressed concern that once enacted, Manila traffic enforcers may indiscriminately flag down motorcycle riders just because they have an exhaust pipe resembling an aftermarket one without even measuring the noise level using a decibel meter, just like other cities before.

Coun. JTV says that only enforcers who are equipped with a decibel meter are allowed to flag down erring motorists.

Hindi porket naka-modified muffler or pipe huli ka na kaagad or ticket ka. Kailangan lang hindi ka aabot or lalampas ng 99 decibels as required by LTO. Kahit naka-stock gamit mo na muffler pero kinalikot tapos lumampas or umabot ng 99 Decibels, huli yun. Tsaka hindi pwedeng manghuli ang Enforcer nang walang gamit na Decibel Meter. (Just because it’s a modified muffler or pipe, the enforcers will not automatically ticket you. What’s important is that it doesn’t reach or exceed 99 decibels as required by the LTO. If so, that’s a ticket. Also, enforcers cannot flag down a motorist if they are not equipped with a decibel meter.)"

The councilor, however, was not able to give specifics about what happens when a motorist is found in violation; particularly if the muffler will be disconnected and confiscated.

Contradictory name

The name of the ordinance may be confusing to many, especially being called “anti-muffler”. By definition, a motor vehicle is fitted with a muffler to “muffle” or bring the exhaust noise down to regulatory limits.

In any case, where the councilor might be coming from is the fact that a lot of people, including motorists, call aftermarket exhausts or open pipe mufflers simply as “mufflers” when describing a motorcycle or a vehicle equipped with such. E.g. "Naka muffler na yan (an aftermarket muffler is already installed)."

A copy of the proposed Ordinance No. 8145 will have to wait until it is signed by Mayor Isko, said councilor JTV to