The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) is warning organizers of entertainment events against using the extension of the cut-off time for parties and other activities to raise sound levels.
Speaking at a recent JIS Think Tank, Head of the Community Safety and Security Branch, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP), Ealan Powell, said that an event can be shut down if amplified sound can be heard more than 100 metres from the venue and causes annoyance to persons in the vicinity.
“Once the sound is audible beyond 100 metres, the (sound system) can be and will be turned off by the police and it can also be seized. Promoters can be charged and taken to court.
“So whilst there is an extension in time, there is no change in the distance that the sound should be audible, so if you are disturbing your neighbour you will be shut down,” he warned.
The House of Representatives recently approved a temporary amendment to the Noise Abatement Act to extend the shut off time for events from 2:00 am to 4: 00 am on weekends and from midnight to 2:00 am during the week. The measure will remain in place until January 31, 2020.
Meanwhile, Head of the Constabulary Communications Unit (CCU), Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Stephanie Lindsay, is reminding event promoters that they still need to go through the regular process of application for permits.
“They are still required to make their applications to the superintendent in charge of the parish or division at least 10 days before the event so as to ensure that there is adequate time to process these applications. Otherwise, they may find that they invest and are not able to carry out the function,” she noted.
She advised them to send in their applications early.
“Although the law says 10 days prior, we recommend that you give more time as the investigation and the processes that are required to successfully have those major events, where patrons and promoters are safe, may require more than the 10 days stipulated,” she said.
SSP Lindsay said event promoters also need to visit the other agencies such the fire department and the local authority to get the required permits that will accompany the granting of licences to stage these events.