Singapore – A 57-year-old retiree living in Hougang Street 52 is said to have called the police eight times a day to complain about the noise levels coming from his upstairs neighbour.
The story of Mr Lu was featured in Chinese newspaper Lianhe Wanbao on Monday (Jan 18). The middle-aged man shared with the media that he would hear loud noises coming from the unit above his last year.
“There is no use telling them about it, the noises do not stop; hence we have no choice but to report to the police,” Mr Lu told Wanbao after their attempts at informing the resident living upstairs yielded no improvements.
According to a mothership.sg report on Jan 20, Mr Lu’s problem began in late 2019 when he heard noises which sounded like children running upstairs. Eventually, the running transitioned to noises of chairs being dragged against the floor.
“The worst thing was the frequent door-slamming noises coming from upstairs,” Mr Lu told Wanbao. As a retiree, Mr Lu and his wife were often at home. He noted the noises prevented them from having a good rest.
The concerned individual mentioned calling the police eight times a day when the noise levels became intolerable. Mr Wu recalled alerting the police of their predicament around 80 times in 2020.
Mr Wu also decided to file a Community Disputes Resolution Act (CDRA) in hopes of resolving the issue after sensing the police may not be able to assist their case.
Mr Wu acquired a decibel meter as a means of measuring the noise levels for evidence purposes. However, his submitted CDRA case was closed in Nov 2020 due to the lack of proof linking the noise to the upstairs unit. This also led to his inability to file for a court order, reported mothership.sg.
The middle-aged man shared having recorded noise levels which reached 80 decibels (dB). “Obviously, the noises are coming from upstairs. Who could it be if it’s not them?” he asked in a video while showing a recorded measurement of 60dB.
For reference purposes, a conversation between two people would register noise levels of about 60 to 70 dB while a busy road’s noise levels could yield 70 to 80 dB.
The issue of neighbouring noises has been frequently highlighted on Facebook page Complaint Singapore. One of the latest ones was from SH Sham who wrote on Jan 15 about a neighbour who would make noises “day and night.”
“Already did all mediation and last at State Court. Two court order settlements were signed but still the same,” wrote the concerned resident.
“Same things happen, again and again, drilling, hacking, knocking at night, and they do more. Imagine our peaceful life becoming miserable since they moved in nine years ago.”
“It is time for the government to look into this kind of matter,” the resident added. “Imagine these people above us make noise as early as 6 am till late night, and you can only call the police after 10:30 pm, and by the time police come they also lock their door and pretend like good people, never open the door and after police left throw things on the floor repeatedly.”
As for Mr Lu’s case, the 70-year-old couple residing above their unit had insisted with Wanbao that the noise was not coming from them. The elderly man noted their chairs and tables had been protected with rubber padding while the door equipped with a door stopper.
In the interview, the elderly man also explained that his granddaughter had just begun learning how to walk, leading to knocking into chairs and tables. Regardless of their due diligence and attempt to explain their situation to the downstairs neighbour, the police would still be called upon frequently during the last year.
“We really didn’t cause the noise disturbance, but he refuses to believe it. At this rate, it’s going to be really exhausting,” the man was quoted saying to Wanbao.
Furthermore, due to the connection of the floors between each Housing and Development unit, it is difficult to pinpoint the source of noise disturbances, as explained by Chong Kee Sen, an ex-president of The Institution of Engineers, Singapore (IES). He added that sound travels through objects, including the walls and floors of HDB units.
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