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What's the Problem?

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Recently we had some calls and e-mails from people asking us, "What's the problem with propane cannons". One more pointed e-mail even suggested that we should get off this topic and spend our energies on more serious noise issues, like boom cars.

As a result of these letters we added this page to the web site to explain the magnitude of the propane cannon issue. And to put it into perspective, we've related propane cannon noise to two of the most topical noise problems people are suffering from today, ie. boom cars and leaf blowers.

What do propane cannons have in common with blowers and boom cars? Well first, they are all loud, very loud. Leaf blowers generate noise at levels up to 75 or 80 decibels. Boom cars can be louder, some even up to 100 decibels. But propane cannons can be as loud as 130 decibels. They blow away their opposition, hands down.

Second, you have no control over these noises. In the case of the boom car you are captive for up to a minute at a red light, until finally the noise drives away. The leaf blower next door is probably worse, because the gardener might work all morning, and you know that next week he will be back at it again. But how about propane cannons? These devices start at dawn. In the summer time, that's about 5:30 AM. They fire away until dusk, or about 9:30 PM. They emit a noise like a shot gun blast, at 120 - 130 decibels, and in our case we average two blasts per minute. Some of our members hear up to six blasts per minute. And the berry season stretches from late June, through to October. And you have to listen to this noise day after day. Is the magnitude of the problem starting to sink in yet?

Another frustration that propane cannon sufferers share with leaf blower victims is that both devices are totally unnecessary. (Boom cars are beyond unnecessary!) People raked successfully for hundreds of years. With propane cannons, our alternatives page lists over a dozen silent alternatives that could be used. But cannon users have the mentality of boom car owners. Loud is good! So louder and more blasts per minute must be even better!!

There is some relief in site. Some cities have started to recognize noise for what it is, ie. not just a nuisance but a real pollution issue. Vancouver for one has banned leaf blowers. Cities are starting to address the issue of boom cars as well, Chicago for example. But how long will it be before propane cannons are recognized for what they really are, and are outlawed?

If you live in the BC Okanagan Valley, the Fraser Valley, the Niagara Peninsula, the Napa Valley in California, and who knows how many other areas, and you are bugged by propane cannons, send us an e-mail. We would like to hear from you, share experiences, and maybe publicise your story on our site.

With your help we can silence these noisemakers.

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