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Dunedin City Council – Kaunihera-a-rohe o Otepoti

We respond to noise complaints and take action when it is excessive or unreasonable. The situations where we can take action are laid out in the Resource Management Act 1991.

Having problems with noise?

If you have a noisy neighbour, try talking to them first. If you can’t resolve the problem, phone us on 477 4000. We are available 24 hours and an officer will respond to excessive noise (such as music) at the time of the complaint.

Noise covered by the RMA

The noise control provisions under the RMA:

  • Protect the public from excessive or unreasonable noise.
  • Protect the rights of people and industry who adopt best practicable options to make a reasonable amount of noise.
  • Set out obligations for all of us to keep noise to a reasonable level.

Under the RMA, excessive noise could be created by:

  • musical instruments
  • electric appliances
  • machines, however they are powered
  • people
  • explosions
  • vibrations

Noise covered by other legislation

Barking dogs are covered under the Dog Control Act, and you contact us to resolve this.

However, other types of noise complaints are managed by other legislation and other organisations. Some of the most common are listed below.

  • Noisy vehicles on a road - Traffic Regulations, contact NZ Police
  • Noisy workplace - Health and Safety and Employment Act, contact OSH
  • Noise from aircraft and trains – Contact Civil Aviation Authority or KiwiRail
  • Noise between tenants in the same dwelling or building premise - Residential Tenancy Act, contact your landlord

Noise in your neighbourhood

Everybody should expect some degree of noise in their neighbourhood from time to time. We do not regulate everyday activities such as:

  • Mowing lawns
  • DIY
  • Sawing wood
  • Road repairs

These sorts of noise might be a nuisance to you temporarily, but as long as the hours of operation are reasonable, we may not respond to such complaints.

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