Golden police revving up enforcement of illegal vehicle exhaust systems

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GOLDEN, Colo. -- It's those cars that always seem to drive through a neighborhood late in the evening, rattling the walls and leaving a block of barking dogs in their wake.

These vehicles with illegal exhaust systems have had their mufflers modified to make more noise as they drive. Essentially defeating the purpose of a muffler.

These disruptions have become particularly exhausting for residents in Golden, where drivers on Lookout Mountain Road can see more than 1,000 vehicles in the course of a busy Sunday.

In a town where peace and serenity is one of the main attractions, neighbors say the sheer number of loud vehicles driving through the area is forcing them to stay inside.

But even with the windows closed, many say there's no escape from the reverberation of louder engines as they drive by.

Which is why the Golden Police Department is revving up it's enforcement of illegal vehicle exhaust systems.

Specifically, the ones that frequently drive through the downtown area, Lookout Mountain Road, and Highways 58 and 93.

an illegal exhaust is defined as a modification to the "exhaust system of a motor vehicle in a manner, which will amplify or increase the noise emitted by the motor of such vehicle above that emitted by the muffler originally installed on the vehicle."

Which basically means any muffler that is louder than what came with the vehicle is considered illegal.

A stock muffler can be identified by the EPA approval stamp embedded on it, which is one of the first things Golden police look for when inspecting a suspected modified exhaust system.

Officers will base their enforcement on two factors.

First, if a vehicle's exhaust system sounds louder than a stock muffler. If it does, then they will look to see if the system is modified.

If both are apparent, then they will issue a citation to the driver. The fine for a first offense of an illegal exhaust system is $200. That amount will increase by $100 with every subsequent offense, maxing out at $400.

The bottom line is respect for the residents of Golden, and any neighborhood in Colorado.

Officers would like drivers who have modified exhaust systems on their vehicles to drive in a quiet manner, with the community in mind.

Anyone with questions is asked to call police at 303-384-8116.

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