Constitutional Chamber Reinforces Noise-Limit Order

May 12, 2006

The Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court (Sala IV) has ruled in favor of a couple who claims the horn of the San José train makes too much noise and prevents their baby girl from sleeping. The ruling reinforces an order emitted by Sala IV justices when the suit was first filed.

The court ruled that the Costa Rican Railroad Institute (INCOFER) must reduce the horn from current levels of as much as 120 decibels to “reasonable limits,” according to the daily La Nación, and eventually place lights at intersections of streets with the train line, which runs from the eastern San José suburb of San Pedro to the western suburb of Pavas.

Pedro Chaves and Alejandra Castro, who live 20 meters from the train tracks in Sabana Sur, a western San José neighborhood, filed the suit against INCOFER earlier this year. Sala IV justices agreed to study the suit and issued an immediate order to INCOFER to comply with Health Ministry noise regulations (TT, March 24). Chaves told La Nación he is pleased that the court recognized rights to “a healthy environment,” but criticized the ruling for not indicating a deadline by which INCOFER must comply.

INCOFER President Miguel Carabaguíaz criticized the ruling for not specifying the levels to which the institute must reduce the horn, and told the daily that reducing the volume could cause more accidents because drivers don’t respect road signs. However, the earlier Sala IV order specified that the horn must comply with Public Health Ministry industrial noise regulations (65 decibels between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m., and 45 decibels overnight).

Since the diesel train, inactive for a decade, began operations last year (TT, Oct. 14, 2005), 15 train-related car accidents have occurred, according to La Nación.

 

You may be interested

Billionaire Piñera to return as Chile’s president
Chile
282 views
Chile
282 views

Billionaire Piñera to return as Chile’s president

Paulina Abramovich / AFP - December 18, 2017

Electoral authorities said the 68-year-old conservative, who previously led the South American nation from 2010-2014, won 54 percent of the vote, nearly eight points above his leftist rival Alejandro Guillier.

Download our High Season Print Edition here
The Tico Times
1043 views
The Tico Times
1043 views

Download our High Season Print Edition here

The Tico Times - December 17, 2017

Thanks to all the readers from around Costa Rica and the world who have written to ask how they can…

PHOTOS: Costa Rica’s Festival of Light
Holidays
3116 views
Holidays
3116 views

PHOTOS: Costa Rica’s Festival of Light

AFP - December 17, 2017

Costa Rica's traditional Festival de la Luz, a holiday parade through the heart of San José, filled the capital with…