Help: my neighbor is killing my music....

I have a truck driver neighbor that has a tendency to leave his diesel truck idling for hours and hours and hours. One time it idled for nearly 20 hours, no kidding. He parks his rig across the street from where I live and sometimes the low frequencies are in-escapable in my home. Forget about listening to music. On ocassion, depending on where exactly he parks, my bedroom sounds like a running refrigerator.

An idling engine is illegal in a residential area in the state of California. I know, I checked. I have called the police several times and they have shown up several times. The idling stops and then starts up again. Whatever fine he is getting from the police does not seem to bother my neighbor very much. Either he pays it or ignores it. Whatever he gets fined must be worth leaving his engine idle for hours.

I am posting this note now as my neighbor's truck won't let me get to sleep. I am at my wit's end. Calling the police doesn't do any good as the idling is still goes on. I don't want to comfront this guy face to face and start some kind of hassle. I just want him to park his rig in a truck stop where it is supposed to be parked.

I need my sleep.

I want to be able to hear my music, again.

Any ideas?
I don't have an answer but wonder why this guy would allow his truck to idle for so long with fuel prices what they are today.

Is this a refrigerated rig with frozen or perishable food on board ?
1) See if he's a independent or employed by a corporation (tractor and trailer markings). Call his employer, if applicable.

2) Call your local police station, and ask to speak to the shift commander, and inform him on the ongoing problem

3) Call your local town/city district representative and report the ongoing violation of zoning ordinances.

4) Call the D.A.'s office and report him as a "public nuisance" who ignores repeated citations.

5) Call the state EPA (or DEQE) to report the illegal diesel pollution.

6) Hire an attorney.
Get ya a couple of 5 pound bags of sugar and sweetin up his tank for cover of darkness with a handy whoop-a*s stick if needed.
Man that sucks, some people just have no class or regard for anyone but themselves. Keep calling cops is all I can really suggest you do, and know I feel for ya! good luck

10-4 over and out
i know you said you dont want a face to face confrontation with this guy but at this point it should be obvious that he has no intention of shutting his truck off.

here's what ya do,the next time this inconsiderate slob leaves his truck running go straight to your garage,dig out your lawnmower,remove the muffler,start that puppy up & park it with the exhaust pointing directly at his house & dont shut it off till he shuts his truck off.

you must realize that he spends so much time in his truck with it running while he sleeps that the sound of a deisel engine running is like a lullaby to him & if you dont do somthing about it then it will never stop.

My first suggestion would be to contact the local county (or city or ?) authorities & register a complaint. Not only is idling illegal, but in most jurisdictions you can't even have a commercial vehicle in a residential neighborhood, although this depends on the tolerance level of the neighborhood.

It's either a company truck or his own rig & you can look up the name that's on the side of the truck and/or trailer. If it's a bigger company they'll probably do something if you complain but if it's his rig or some jackleg outfit, it'll be a wasted effort. When calling, I'd suggest shielding your name and # to prevent repercussions. It can happen.

There's the possibility it's a reefer unit like Albert mentioned & if that's the case, there's no way the load can stay cool (or warm) w/o the reefer unit running, which is a small diesel located either on the top front of the trailer or under the middle of the trailer. There can be as much as 45k lbs. of product inside & if it goes bad, either the driver or the company has to pay for it, so they'll do whatever it takes to keep it at the proper temp.
Matchstikman, why won't you go talk to him?

Reporting him to the authorities is the means in which we increasingly deal with our fellow human beings. It is sure to build ill will in him. And, if he does find out you are the one who reported him, he may well seek to retaliate.

I deal with people face to face, and in mostly all circumstances in "the real world", I have developed good relationships with people. As a society, I have always believed that what people have complained most often through my life was not a loosening of whatever, but the increasing lack of the common man to take a stand.

While the discussion may be one you dread, the result may not develop into a confrontation. He may see your point of view (especially, if his practice is illegal), and simply say, "You're right, I'm sorry. I'll stop leaving the truck idling..." You may end up forging a friendship that you value highly.
Completely agree with Driver and Fatparrot.
If you do decide to talk to him, have a frame of mind that this WILL NOT BE A CONFRONTATION, but a friendly request/discussion. If he starts to get miserable, just politely thank him for his time and walk away. At that point in time, fully implement Driver's and Fatparrot's suggestions.
It is unfortunate that there are some people who are truly inconsiderate in the fullest sense of the word.
Unless you live in the sticks surely your community has noise ordinances.
Plus as stated earlier most communities have ordinances regarding the parking of commercial vehicles in residential neighborhoods.

Inconsiderate SOB's are the bane of mankind.
It will be your fault that's there is a problem. He'll not have a clue as to the grief he is causing you, plus some others who live nearby that feel as you.

Call your local assembly person/council person even if it's three o'clock in the morning and voice your complaint. If there are not noise/commercial vehicle ordinances on the books then there should.

Now this kills me, the local police won't hesitate to issue tickets for speeding and the like but have violations of civil ordinances they drive around totally ignoring the issue. A person has to call in and formally complain which puts the bad guy moniker on the complaintant rather than on the cop.

Personally I like the lawn mower idea.
And get some of your neighbors to join you. You can't be the only one that's being disturbed.
Did you sign a complaint against him? Most times the police will just ask him to turn it off and leave. They don't want to be bothered with such a "minor" infraction. So, the next time he does it, walk up to the Police and demand to sign a complain/ticket. They will have no choice but to issue him a ticket which you will have to sign. Of course, you will have to testify in court.

I had a similair experience a while back. I live in a fairly new sub division. A truck pulls up in front of the house at 5am with a pre-fab house on the back of it. So, after the truck sits there idling for about 15 minutes I put on my pants and went out an informed him that this is a residential neighbothood and asked him to turn it off. He flipped me the bird so I called the Police. The Police gave me some lame excuse why they couldn't come out. So, I told them that I would sign the complaint/ticket and demanded that they come out. About 20 minutes later they arrived. After they got him to turn off the truck, they tried to talk me out of signing the complaint but I insisted. A few weeks later I appeared in court. The driver was from Ohio and did not show but he wrote some lame ass letter. The Builder, and an Attorney, showed up to represent the absent truck driver. The Judge gave him a ticket for making a delivery before 6am ($500) and leaving a vehicle idling ($3000 in NJ!) plus court cost. The Builder paid the fine and I didn't have any more problems after that.

On a side note, trying to get the Police to enforce the handicap parking is worse than pulling teeth. I have signed many compaints on people illegally parking in the Handicap spots. Some of the excused: "I was only running into the store to buy cigerettes, milk, etc", "I did not see the blue lines and Handicap sign", "Nobody was using it at the time", "I would have moved if a Handicapped person wanted to use the space", and my favorite "I drive an Audi, I don't think the law applies to me".

Good luck with an unpleasant situation,
Thanks for all the ideas. My truck driver neighbor finally left last night around midnight. It is so nice this morning. It is quiet.

I actually have the ordinance number of the law that states that engines cannot idle in a residential area unless they are performing some kind of work like road repair, etc. The police dispatcher was very sympathetic to my problem. But, after calling the police more than a few times and nothing really happening, calling the police again seems to be a waste of time.

This guy is an independent because you don't see the same truck all the time.

I will follow up and keep you posted if you want. Thanks.
Not that this is in the least bit helpful, but it is my understanding that the large diesel engines in semi-trucks consume an enormous amount of fuel on start up, so much so that a common fuel-saving stategy is to simply keep them idling 24/7. That may be what he is doing.
The first thing I would do is talk to the guy. That way, you'll know for certain whether he's thick as a block of concrete or he just doesn't care that he is disturbing his neighbors.

If it's the former, just your efforts to communicate may be enough to set things right. If the latter, then I would pursue a zoning ordinance violation. Once they tow his truck away, you won't care if it's running or not.
As a person that actually deals with people like this, why don't you go buy him a case of beer and talk to him about how much the idling is bothering you. The police are only going to upset him more. My guess is if you would have done this in the beginning, he would not leave his truck idling just to bug you.
Write a letter to everybody in local goverment with your complaint, by everybody I mean the Prosecuters office, Mayor, Police Chief, Senators, etc and make sure they all know you sent letters to the persons above them. This is FAR more effective than phone calls. No one likes complaints floating around in writing, phone calls are to common and won't get you anywhere. Also mention in your letter about going to the local news agency because of the lack of service. When the Police Chief gets a letter passed down from the Mayor saying ," take care of this" , it will be taken care of. Then make sure you follow up with your complaint. All the other suggestions are fine with the exception of the one about sugar in the tank and a big stick which could land you in jail yourself. Good luck, TG
Drivers like to keep their diesels running because it cuts down on wear and tear. Starting the engine is when all the damage is done.

I would recommend having the guy place his truck on a set of Star Tech's Audiopoints. They're scientifically designed to drain vibration to earth.

You might also want to place a Golden Sound Intelligent Chip on the engine to realign the motor's quantum fields. That should result in a smoother running engine, better gas milage and less noise.

Ask you neighbor to upgrade his truck to the MkII Signature Reference
version. The internet buzz is that it's a major upgrade. Much greater harmonic integrity.

How about placing a Shakti Hallograph on your lawn to add some musically complementary harmonics to his truck's noise. You might have to experiment with positioning.

Contact the Cable Company, there might be a power cord that solves this type of problem.

In all seriousness, the person is your neighbor. TRY TALKING TO HIM. Invite him over to your house and show him what the problem is from your perspective. Ask him for a solution. Maybe he can think of one that will satisfy you. Talk to your other neighbors, do they also have an issue with the noise? If they do, ask for their help. The law is on your side, but legal tatics should probably be avoided. They're expensive, very harmful to long term relationships and they can have devastating unexpected consequences. A cold beer and a couple of slabs of meat on the grill can work miracles.

Good luck!
Some good ideas here. I will try talking to him, but he is going to know that I am the guy that has already got him ticketed several times.

Prpixel, I could deal with the engine idling for 15 minutes or even a few hours, but I am talking about this guy starting his engine at 9pm and it goes and goes until maybe 5pm the next day. non-stop.

Here is the kicker, I like to listen near-field to my music and now that is impossible when my trucker friend is idling. Trying to listen to soft passages is not even worth trying. I am even thinking that I have "trained" myself to listen more acutely to sound and probably I have a more sensitive stand because of this.

People got to make a living and I don't want to cause this guy problems, but he doesn't seem to be bothered by leaving his engine going all night. If my other neighbors are bothered by it, they are the kind that will grin and bear it. My neighbor to the right is an older gent that I know would never say a world about anything.

On the bright side, my idling neighbor tends to be out of town or away during most of the week, so for now, it is quiet...AAAAAAHHHHHH, that's nice.
Be careful talking to him, he might punch you in the nose after he puts two and two together. You should have done that (talked) back in the beginning when it first started.

Good luck,
I'd like to add to what I wrote earlier this a.m.

Although having a talk w/this fellow seems like it could possibly work out, if it doesn't & there's subsequent enforcement, guess who he's going to remember as having a problem w/his truck? Unfortunately, one of the worst human traits is being vindictive, so since the cycle of complaints has already started, I would keep trying to use the system for now.

I owned my own truck for 10 yrs. & parked it right in my driveway w/o problems from my neighbors & wouldn't want an idling truck across the street from me either. If it doesn't have a reefer unit, I don't understand why this fellow lets his truck idle all the time, although I have a few ideas. Engine wear isn't a consideration, although if I were stopping for 10 minutes or so, I wouldn't shut the engine off.

Regardless of who owns the truck, it should have a name on it somewhere along with a DOT number, although some states don't require a US DOT number if the truck is only used for intrastate purposes. Even with that, there should be some kind of identifying # and if used for interstate travel, should have an IFTA sticker.

I'm mentioning all this because I know CA is very interested in collecting fuel tax money from every truck on the highway, so if it doesn't have the necessary permits, there are some state agencies who would be very interested in this truck.

Several yrs. ago I had some neighbors (actually I prefer to just say the people next door) who disrupted the tranquility of our area for an entire year. I, along with other neighbors, used "the system" and eventually were able to force the homeowner, who was renting, to sell his property. I came very close to doing something I'd still be paying for if I used alternative methods, although if it happened again, I'm not sure how I'd react.

Bottom line is you can prevail, although it may take some effort on your part.
Yes, 15 minutes is not a long time. But, I was the only house on the street and he had to pull up right in front of my house. In addition, he was blocking our driveway. He wasn't the first sub of the builder to do something like this. There was a drywall delivery truck who wanted to unload at 2am and a bulldozer that wanted to grade a lot in the middle of the night.

I would warn him then sign the compaint the next time he did it. He knows that his neighbors are ticked off at him because the Police have been there numerous times.
Jay, are you still planning on moving? That sounds like the best relief yet. That, or headphones. Hope to see you soon!
Howard, I am still planning on moving. This just adds fuel to the fire.
No doubt, Jay. Sorry to hear about the problem.

We've had one of another type...body shop across the alley. BAAAD paint fumes! Strange, all I ever feel like listening to anymore is the Grateful Dead. The combination definitely gives you that 'you are there' experience, though. :-)
Good luck with the move,
Driver is right! The guy is probably running a reefer [refrigeration unit] on the trailer of his truck. I have dealt with professional drivers, as well as "slob" drivers. Slob drivers usually don't care about rules and regs., and would just as soon bust a 2" X 4" over your head than deal with you. STAY AWAY FROM HIM, AND STAY SAFE! And don't commit any criminal acts against his property, as tempting as it may sound. He will then be laughing at you, as you are arrested, or served with a summons.