Pictured, Grand County Sheriff’s Office deputies set up decibel monitoring equipment on a modified rock-crawler at Sand Flats Recreation Area on May 27, watched by Grand County Commission Chair Mary McGann. [Maggie McGuire / Moab Sun News]

Grand County held a voluntary vehicle noise-testing event at the entrance to the Sand Flats Recreation Area on May 27 to train officers on noise monitoring, collect data on off-road vehicle noise levels, and to educate the public on the county’s new noise ordinance. Drivers who decided to opt-in to testing were given free admission to Sand Flats for the day.

Officers tested about 35 vehicles: mostly UTVs, numerous Jeeps, a couple of vans, and two dirt bikes, County Attorney Christina Sloan reported. Of the 35 vehicles, only two measured as louder than the Grand County ordinance’s 92-decibel limit, as measured using a standardized test conducted 20 inches from the vehicle’s tailpipe.

At the Grand County Commission meeting on June 1, Sloan noted that the drivers of the most egregiously noisy modified or unmaintained vehicles did not volunteer to be tested. Moab City may sponsor a similar event in the fall.