Skip to comments.Ban on leaf blowers mulled
Posted on 04/17/2012 9:44:54 AM PDT by raccoonradio
If you're running a leaf blower, some people in Marblehead want you to reconsider the rake.
They've even put the issue on the warrant for the May 7 Town Meeting.
The proposed article says simply, "To see if the town will ban the use of leaf blowers in the Town of Marblehead or take any other action relative thereto."
Some supporters have suggested the wording be amended on the floor to merely limit leaf blowing.
Noise is the main objection to leaf blowers, although there are other drawbacks touching on health and the environment. Getting rid of the noise, said Sandi Peaslee, a backer of the article, "would be a wonderful thing."
Even landscapers like Scott Thomson in Salem express sympathy toward those who can't bear the ear-splitting roar of leaf blowers. His own workers are told to wear protective devices over their ears.
But if the article passes, it's going to cost Marbleheaders more to groom their yards substantially more, Thomson said.
"I would say 25 percent more at the least," he said, noting that it will take workers a lot longer to do the same job with a rake.
Thomson, who remembers the days before leaf blowers, believes they not only make lawn work quicker, they make it better. For example, a leaf blower can force out dead leaves stuck within bushes and hedges.
Otherwise, he said, "they have to pick those leaves out by hand."
His trucks also use large reverse blowers to suck leaves in at the end of the job. Thomson wonders if a new bylaw would affect that process.
"This is about money," he said. "We sell time." And that time will balloon if the article passes.
Proponents like Beth Grader expect opposition. At a March 27 forum in Marblehead to discuss the issue, opponents of the ban grew so heated that some simply left the meeting, she said.
People who have paid for leaf blowers want to use them, Grader said.
"And I hate telling anyone what they can do," she said, but adds, "You have the darn things going all summer long."
She notes that her seriously ill mother, confined to her room with open windows, will be hard-pressed to bear the racket.
"The decibel level of a leaf blower is much higher than a lawn mower," she said.
And that's only part of the problem.
Peaslee points out that gasoline-powered motors pollute the environment. Moreover, leaf blowers' absence would improve conditions for the garden, as they often take out vital "leaf litter" that helps plants thrive.
Grader also invites voters to consider what's in the dust that leaf blowers kick up, including animal droppings. The dust lingers in the air, she warns, and runners and others breathe all that deep into their lungs.
If limiting leaf blowing is an idea whose time has come, you wouldn't know it by listening to one veteran Salem city councilor. Joe O'Keefe says it hasn't been proposed in his city, and he thinks it would fail 11-0 if it were.
"What are they going to ban next?" he asks. "People want to clean their lawns and driveways. It's an advantage to have a leaf blower. Are we going to ban lawn mowers, too? Or airplanes? They make noise."
He has his own leaf blower but concedes, "I can't get it to start."
As for his neighbors in Marblehead, he asks, "Don't the taxpayers and poor souls in Marblehead have enough to do without banning leaf blowers?"
>>if the article passes, it's going to cost Marbleheaders more to groom their yards substantially more, Thomson said. "I would say 25 percent more at the least," he said, noting that it will take workers a lot longer to do the same job with a rake.
Nanny state (and in Concord MA they want to ban bottled water in plastic containers)
>>People who have paid for leaf blowers want to use them, Grader said. "And I hate telling anyone what they can do," she said, but adds, "You have the darn things going all summer long."
All summer long? Are there that many fallen leaves?
>>gasoline-powered motors pollute the environment.
The town composts theses leaves for about 18-24 months and then gives the loam away to homeowners for free.
The vehicle they use makes the Devil's own noise and can be heard from 1/2 a mile away. If it weren't for the free loam, I'd love to see that beast mothballed.
This is what you get when you have Mass-holes in a state that would vote for Barney, Teddy and Mitt.
Tell her to buy some ear plugs for her mother. GEEEEZ
I own a gasoline drive leaf blower.
I haven’t actually turned it on in 8 or 9 years. It sits in my shed without so much a scratch on its painjob.
I no longer rake or blow the leaves. I simply put the mulcher blade on my lawnmower and turn the 3” or 4” thick carpet of leaves every fall into finely ground dust that settles back into the grass as fertilizer. It takes less time, looks better and produces no waste.
Leafblowers are one of the most obnoxious devices on the planet. They’re hellishly loud and people never use them to clean up debris instead using it to push the debris off their property. I don’t know if they necessarily should be banned, but it’s nice they’ve largely gone out of vogue in my chunk of the world.
it is past time for a “Million Leaf Blower March” on city hall.....
Too much noise huh? Guess other things will have to be similarly banned:
1) Neighbor’s dogs
2) Neighbor’s kids (not mine of course)
5) Motorcycles (not mine of course)
6) Skippy, the ice cream truck
8) Fire and Police Sirens
9) Rap music
Now, if they were banned altogether wouldn’t that cause a mass exodus of people back to Mexico?
It's tough for a small-government type to say, but I wish my city would ban leaf blowers.
Every year another ban, restriction, etc. This USED to be “The Land of the Free”, but every group, from neighborhood associations on up, has become despots handing down edicts.
If it weren’t for trees, they wouldn’t have leaf blower problems.
She must have different seasons than the rest of the country. Leaves fall in the... Fall.
I use mine to blow out the garage and driveway about once a week. It takes 5 minutes to to the garage and a 200’ long driveway.
Keep in mind, Marblehead is one of the richest towns in all of Mass. It is probably all those lawn services working during the middle of the week with all their ETHNIC workers that live in towns like Methuen, Haverhill and God Forbid LAWRENCE.
The landscape artists run the mowers all around and then use the blowers to clear the clippings off the sidewalks and driveways
Leaf blowers could be silenced with a 10 dollar muffler.
They are used every week for grass and debris. I would like to see them muffled, not banned. They are a pain though. I can’t count the number of times my car has been covered with grass and dirt by one of them.....even in a commercial parking garage.
11) Roosters, they crow so early in the morning
12) Jet Skis (Big Squam Lake in NH has banned jet skis)
13) Chain Saws , I like to start mine about 7am on Sunday
14) Canadian Geese
Rakes? I can’t stand the sound of those either! Demand that each leaf be picked up by hand!
Now, all you people who thought smokers were crazy for getting upset about all the smoking ban ordinances, can now officially apologize. Once the “illuminated elite” figure out they can push people around, there’s no end to it. They’ll just keep expanding the groups they can push around.
I hate those things.People seem to use them and think it is ok to blow the leaves out of their yard and into others yards.Better to run a mulching mover over them and leave them on the lawn for food.
I actually prefer the rake to the blower. I own a blower, but find it is actually more work to use it unless it is to gttheleaves off my driveway or a solid surface. A blower is pretty much useless on the grass, especially given the amount of rain we get in the fall.
You are right. It is an obnoxiously loud and annoying tool.
Even the one I own (and haven’t used in years) was not something I purchased myself.
It was given to me as a gift.
I do remember thinking at the time, “What am I supposed to do with this loud worthless piece of crap”, but I was polite to my wife’s relative and thanked her.
I’ve always wondered to where do they blow the leaves? Aren’t the leaves eventually going to blow around again? In my neighborhood I’ve seen the leaves being blown into the catch basins, which clogs them up and causes our street to flood. There’s actually a law against it, but it’s never enforced.
My educated guess is that a fair number of "undocumented" folks from Lawrence and Lowell will soon be nursing sore arms, aching from raking.
I'd also love to know what Barbara Anderson (Citizens for Limited Taxation and a long-time Marblehead resident) thinks of this.
These ideas are always advanced by liberal pussies who don’t do their own land maintenance, and never have pushed a mower or pulled a rake.
Use a mulcher and/or run the mower with the shoot toward the inside of the mowing pattern. Problem solved.
These ideas are always advanced by liberal pussies who don’t do their own land maintenance, and never have pushed a mower or pulled a rake.
Then shut the damn window. If you live in a community where people can afford to get their landscaping done, then you can afford a window a/c. Shut the window, dipshit.
"Peaslee points out that gasoline-powered motors pollute the environment."
So now leaf blowers are a pollutant and adding to the failed global warming theory?
"Moreover, leaf blowers' absence would improve conditions for the garden, as they often take out vital leaf litter that helps plants thrive."
BS. I watch my mow & go guys blow the leaf debris into my flower beds and they're doing fine. Where does she think all those leafs go, down some special leaf drain hole? Also, if you have a garden, then you know how to fertilize it. It doesn't need "leaf litter".
"Grader also invites voters to consider what's in the dust that leaf blowers kick up, including animal droppings. The dust lingers in the air, she warns, and runners and others breathe all that deep into their lungs."
Unbelievable. Dust in the air? Guess they should outlaw dirt and the wind. While they're at it, they should outlaw plants that are the main cause of allergies that get into the all so wonderful "runners" lungs.
As far as "animal droppings", anyone who has a pet or has pets outside next door is inhaling molecules of fecal matter. Here's a fact for this dumbass: She inhales more fecal molecules every time she flushes the toilet after emptying her bowels, unless she pushed the handle and runs. If she's not strictly hygiene aware, than she also has fecal matter on her hands after doing her duty.
While I'm on a rant: I am so sick of that stupid commercial that shows some woman on her balcony smoking and watching the special-effects generated smoke drift up to the floor above and left of her to attack the baby in the crib.
Think about it. She's outside which immediately dissipates the molecules. Yet, they show the smoke (in a stream) traveling directly up and over to the other apartment and then inside and then into the baby's room and then hanging over the child with a demonic look. How many exhaled molecules could actually reach the child from that distance from outside? I say 4.
Poor kid is gonna have stunted growth and emphysema due to that women outside below. Sheesh. The kid has more threat from its own parents bringing home some bacteria or virus.
Another example of government officials and busy-bodies needing to justify their existence.
Instead of banning leaf blowers outright, a better way would probably be to do three things:
1) Make a scheduled window of time each weekday when leaf blower use is acceptable. Make it flexible in case of storms, or for people who work during that time, encouraging them to agree with their neighbors when an acceptable time would be. Discourage leaf blowing on the weekends.
2) Encourage “casual” leaf blower users to use electric, either wire or battery powered, which while less powerful are also less ‘stinky’. Encourage “professional” landscapers to keep their gasoline powered leaf blowers tuned and serviced, to minimize their stink.
3) Combine it all with a public-private composting initiative, which already exists in many cities, in which there is free curbside pick up of bagged leaves and other garden waste, by request. This works in two ways, in that after composting, local residents can pick up free compost fertilizer for their gardens, with the remainder used for public parks.
Sounds like a weak leaf blower. A 200mph Echo works fine on grass :)
Sorry, that doesn't work for us suburbanites who have patios and pools and are too busy with our jobs and making an honest living. Even I get annoyed by the constant noise of the leaf-blowers in my neighborhood, but I understand that all are at work during the day. If they can afford mov&go, and prefer to enjoy their weekends, more power to them.
Screw the noise-nazis. If they don't like it, let them move to a rural area or shut their damn windows or get ear plugs. Noise is a fact of life in suburbia - think car traffic. During the summer with the bedroom slider open, I sleep with earplugs. Sleep great.
I lived in Masshole. Without a leaf blower... I hope liberals do this. :)
You guys must be real strong to be able to push those manual, rotary, mulch mowers, because I know you don't want that obnoxiously loud gas powered, lawn mower to do your little job?
I wish my city would allow me to shoot loud mowered hypocrites.
How many people do you see wearing hearing protection when they are using their gas lawnmower? Zero. That's because sounds lower than 85 dB are not harmful. On that logarithmic scale, a leaf blower's shrill whine is well over 100; nearly as obnoxious as you are.
You’ve got me convinced. But then, I do my own yardwork (one of the few around that do). The landscapers and lawn services are the ones who use that technique. Show up, lot of noise, gone to the next job.
Good point and you are so effin right. I hate this shite hole.
A ban on leaf blowers would go a long way toward solving our illegal immigration problem.
I love mine for dusting...open the windows, fire that puppy up, and voila!! No more dust lol
The old One Kidpower Grass Slasher! Has the added advantage of fighting the "obesity epidemic": mandate them...it's for the CHEEEL-drin!
Then, make them finish the job with these:
Yep. My dad had all those things. Kidpower indeed!
Maybe in her honor there should be a weekly allotted time free citizens have permission from government to do their yard work. A fine of course if you don't and a fine if you do yard work requiring gas or electric power on any other day. Bug Zappers yea ban them also and those horrid smelling mosquito torches as well. All of this posted in extreme sarcasm of course.
I'm glad I live where I do. I can mow when I wish, or never mow at all and no one cares, shoot my firearms when I wish, plus much more, just as do my neighbors also do living nearly a quarter mile away. We all get along just fine. :>}
As for the womans complaints? There are several ways to make your home a lot more insulated to outside noises. I have an Ondura roofing on my home and it knocks out most outside noises. I live right over a medivac flight path for helicopters usually flying fairly low. I barely hear them now and only when directly overhead.
The noisiest,most annoying device around.
I’ve seen guys spend up to an hour just blowing stuff around that they could have swept or raked in 15 minutes.
Leaves fall in the fall,true,but the darned things are used to cleanup grass cuttings and just plain dirt that collects on sidewalks.
They are also used for the spring cleanup here in MA.
They seem to have a hypnotizing effect on the users. They just stand there and blow things around.
Leaf blowers are a three season pain in the butt.