'Jake Brakes' No Longer Permitted in Chelsea


The city of Chelsea will soon be just a little bit quieter. At their July 24th meeting, Chelsea City Council voted to add a new ordinance to the city code that restricts the use of “Jake Brakes” within the City of Chelsea and surrounding areas unless in an emergency situation that involves, “imminent danger of collision with property, persons or animals.”

Ordinance 183 will be known as the City of Chelsea Use of Engine Compression Brakes (Jake Brake) Ordinance. Its purpose is to, “secure the public health, safety and welfare of the residents and property owners by restricting the use of vehicle compression brakes within the City of Chelsea; and to provide penalties for the violation of said Ordinance…”

Vehicle compression brakes, also known as ‘Jake Brakes,’ are braking systems that leverage variations in engine compression to reduce speed. The release of compression adds a notably loud noise to the sound of a normally operating engine. The additional noise is a frequent source of frustration for area residents and business owners and is the reason many cities have introduced similar restrictions.

The ordinance will take effect in just under thirty days at which time operators in violation of the ordinance will be subject to a municipal civil infraction as described in the city code.

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