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Families sue Spring business over noise

Saturday, February 11, 2012

There is a battle growing between some homeowners in Spring and the owners of a machine shop right behind them.

The homeowners say company employees have been playing loud music at all hours of the night. The owners of Coil Tubing Technology says their music isn't as loud as neighbors claim. Now this battle could end up in court.

Some residents claim the music is so loud they can feel the vibrations throughout their homes. They say their complaints have fallen on deaf ears which has left them no choice but to take legal action. The business owners tell us the residents are way off base.

Homeowner Brad Serres says as much as he loves his backyard, he and his family don't spend much time here anymore. He blames his neighbor.

"CTT, the operating company over here, started playing loud music," he said. "Their business is obviously pretty good due to the shale play in Texas and so they've started working late shifts."

The warehouse sits about 10 feet beyond the fence Serres shares with the company. He says some nights it's so loud he and his wife can't even sleep.

"You can't hear the words, but the bass," Serres said. "There's very little insulation, if any, in the warehouse, so it just reverberates off metal and pretty much shakes the house. Our bedroom, of course, is right here."

Serres, who recorded some of what he's heard with his iPhone, and three of his neighbors are now suing Coil Tubing Technology, along with the warehouse property owner Ronnie Rabel, accusing them of creating a nuisance.

Rabel said, "Screw them! We were here first. If they move in and don't look over the fence is that my problem?"

What's more, Rabel says police can't do anything unless the noise exceeds a certain level and it hasn't. State law says anything over 85 decibels is deemed unreasonable. Rabel says he monitors the noise with a decibel reader. It registered around 67 decibels with the music playing and the equipment running.

Jason Swinford of Coil Tubing Technology said, "I know we make some noise but what you just heard is the extent of what we do here."

Serres admits he knew what he was getting into when he bought his home but wishes things could go back to the way they used to be.

"They've been operating for 10 years in a matter consistent with what you should do when you're backed up to a residential neighborhood," Serres said. "I think it'll be up to the courts to decide whether it's proper or not."

Swinford and Rabel call the lawsuit frivolous. Serres says both sides are scheduled to appear in court later this month.

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