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Brookline's Leaf Blower Ban Bylaw Now in Effect

The Brookline Police Department issued a reminder that leaf blowers are not to be used for certain parts of the year. The bylaw goes into effect today.

[Clarification: The phrase "leaf blower" in the bylaw refers to gas-powered devices. The police department clarified in an e-mail:

The language of the by-law defines leaf blowers as any portable gasoline-powered machine used to blow leaves, dirt, and other debirs off lawns, sidewalks, and other horizontal surfaces.

The article has been updated to clarify this point. 9:34 a.m., June 6]

It is time to hang up your leaf blower for the summer, . 

, which passed , has gone into effect, per a document sent out by the earlier today. 

Brookline Police sent out a timely PDF reminder, available to the right. 

Per the stipulations of the ban, gas-powered leaf blowers can only be used between March 15 and May 15 in the spring, and September 15 and December 15 in the late fall. Use outside of those two month-long periods is a violation of the town's noise bylaw. During those periods, they can only be used between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. on the weekdays, or 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on the weekends. 

Outside of those dates and times, use of leaf blowers is not allowed.

If you have a leaf blower, it also has to meet the town's noise limit of 67 decibels. Many machines will have a manufacturer's sticker indicating the noise level, but if yours does not, the  will test them at the 870 Hammond Street facility, on the first and third Tuesdays of the month.

The Police document adds, "We are recommending that you check your leaf blowers for the proper manufacturer’s label indicating that the noise level of the machine does not exceed 67 db. If it does, it will be illegal to use this machine in Brookline and you may be subject to a fine. If no label is attached, we strongly suggest you attend an inspection at your earliest convenience."

Per the provisions of the bylaw, gas leaf blowers cannot be modified, and must be used as directed by the manufacturer. People with questions are encouraged to contact the DPW at 617-646-2700.

The bylaw does not apply to the DPW's leaf blowers or to town Contractors. 

MoonBeamWatcher June 06, 2012 at 03:15 AM
THIS 'law' pertains to GAS operated leaf blowers. Unfortunate this is not made clear in this TAB post.
MoonBeamWatcher June 06, 2012 at 03:17 AM
Per the stipulations of the ban, GAS leaf blowers can only be used between March 15 and May 15 in the spring, and September 15 and December 15 in the late fall. Use outside of those two month-long periods is a violation of the town's noise bylaw. During those periods, GAS leaf blowers can only be used between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. on the weekdays, or 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on the weekends. Outside of those dates and times, use of GAS leaf blowers is not allowed.
Bill Davidson June 06, 2012 at 11:26 AM
THIS is not the TAB.
Bill Davidson June 06, 2012 at 11:30 AM
It's also unfortunate that the Brookline Police Department document makes no mention of gas leaf blowers.
Grahame Turner June 06, 2012 at 01:40 PM
That was my interpretation of the discussion last fall, but I couldn't confirm it in my notes. Because the PD document didn't specify, I didn't want to say "electric is cool," be wrong, and get someone in trouble. Fortunately, the Police Department responded in a timely manner, and I have made the clarification. And as Bill points out, Patch is in no way connected to the Tab. You are thinking of WickedLocal.

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