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  October 7, 2002

Improving Our Quality of Life: Operation Silent Night
By Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg

The number one complaint to the NYPD's Quality of Line Hotline is not squeegee men. It's not prostitution. It's not drug dealing. Far and away, the most vexing concern for New Yorkers is that there is too much disruptive noise in our communities. In fact, noise complaints made up nearly eighty-three percent of the calls received by the hotline last year, and the problem is getting worse. In the last nine months, 93,000 noise complaints have already been made.

In response to this escalating clamor, a new quality of life initiative took effect last Friday that aims to control unreasonable noise in neighborhoods throughout the City. It's called "Operation Silent Night" and it will help make sure that noisy New Yorkers start keeping it down!

The first phase of this coordinated, multi-agency effort will specifically target twenty-four locations identified as "high-noise zones" by the NYPD-the areas where people's lives are affected the most. Selection was based on the high volume of noise complaints from these areas to the Quality of Life Hotline, as well as information provided by local police precincts. Looking at these zones on a map shows us that disruptive noise pollution is clearly a citywide problem. The locations of the initial crackdown include: Soundview in the Bronx; Flatbush in Brooklyn; Greenwich Village in Manhattan; St. George in Staten Island; and Astoria in Queens.

Operation Silent Night is a long-term effort -- additional zones will be identified and targeted throughout the five boroughs in subsequent phases of the program. It's also a top priority for the NYPD. The Executive Officer in each zone's precinct will oversee the initiative to make sure noise issues are being addressed. Police, working with other agencies, will use sound meters, vehicle checkpoints and aggressive summons operations to crack down on excessive noise and make these communities more peaceful.

Operation Silent Night is part of the NYPD's broader commitment to continue to prevent quality of life infractions in New York City. As we continue to attack offenses like graffiti and aggressive panhandling, we must also target other recurring problems that impair New Yorkers' quality of life. Blaring music from clubs and car stereos -- loud and unruly bar patrons -- the roar of speeding motorcycle engines and the continuous din of honking horns -- all come together to create the sense of disorder that can lead to more serious crime.

So by making New York the most livable big City, Operation Silent Night can also help it remain the safest. To report loud, excessive, or disruptive noise, please call the NYPD's Quality of Life Hotline at (888) 677-5433.