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Culver City Board Urges Limits on Leaf Blowers

February 15, 1987

The Culver City Planning Commission has recommended that the City Council limit the operating hours of gasoline-powered leaf blowers to between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. on weekdays and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends.

The planning board also was considering banning the blowers or restricting noise levels to a maximum of 55 decibels. Commission members were urged by the Southern California Gardeners Federation and a firm that imports the machines not to recommend either of those measures.

Robert S. Ida, a spokesman for the Los Angeles-based gardeners group, said the 4,000-member organization has set its own guidelines which limit operating hours to between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends.

Gordon Davis, merchandising manager for HMC Corp. of Long Beach, which imports gas-powered blowers, said manufacturers are working on reducing noise levels. Davis had urged the commission not to set the 55-decibel restriction because the lowest level any gas-powered blower can reach today is 65 decibels at half-throttle, he said.

Thomas Ruggieri, who supports tough restrictions on the blowers, said he has complained to police about the machines being operated as early as 6:45 a.m. at a supermarket next to his home at 6659 Green Valley Circle. He had suggested that the commission limit use of the machines to weekdays only, between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

According to a report by the Culver City Fire Department, the cities of Santa Monica, Redondo Beach and Lomita have set restrictions on gas-powered blowers. Los Angeles is drafting a law to prohibit the machines in residential areas, and Beverly Hills has banned them.

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