The “machine gun” noise of engine compression brakes (“jake brakes”) on trucks in the U.S. 421 corridor in Wilkesboro is a public nuisance, especially if the trucks are improperly muffled.

Many towns like Wilkesboro with residential and commercial development along the same stretches of road have addressed this problem in a sensible and effective way by posting signs prohibiting unmuffled engine compression brakes. Some towns have prohibited the use or operation of any compression brake or mechanical exhaust device designed to help stop or decelerate any vehicle, muffled or not, unless necessary to avoid imminent danger.

Some say enforcement is cumbersome, but officials in some other towns say truck drivers mostly remedy this disturbing noise on their own when signs capture their attention.

Local leaders and decision makers are urged to develop and implement ordinances addressing this problem. They have authority to take this action under N.C. Statutes.

Granted, sometimes loud noises on a busy highway are inevitable. However, posting this message at strategic locations is a simple and economical step in the right direction.

Our leaders’ job is to improve quality of life for residents and visitors. If you agree please get behind this issue and hold local leaders responsible.

MATTHEW S. MILLER,

Wilkesboro, N.C.

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