Appreciation Expressed for Community Meeting on Noisy Kite Flying

Sun, 2019-02-10

As a result of numerous complaints by members of the public regarding the loud noise from kites being flown around the island – which in some cases have led to physical altercations – the Western Community Action Team convened a community meeting at Bright Temple AME Church on Friday, February 8th from 6:30pm until 8:30pm to allow all concerned to express their views, share some suggestions and identify solutions.

There were approximately 50 people in attendance – including area residents and members of an organised kite flying group – who expressed their appreciation for a forum where their concerns could be heard and any relevant issues raised addressed.

The facilitators of the community meeting, Constable Valerius Jean Louis and Constable Cerepha Bridgeman of the Western Community Action Team, informed those in attendance that Section 18A of the Summary Offences Act 1926 states, “any person who, in any public place flies any kite over the public place to the annoyance or danger of any passenger or frequenter commits an offence against this Act.”

Chief Inspector Tracy Adams and officers from the Central Community Action Team were also on hand representing the Bermuda Police Service (BPS).

Several extracts from the Act were given to those in attendance and some suggestions were shared by attendees which included:

to desist from flying noisy kites during the night.

to avoid flying the kites in areas where there have been several complaints, or fly in those areas where there have been complaints only when the winds allow for the kites to be flown over the water, so as to avoid annoying anyone landside.

amending the law to regulate or include kite flying periods, which were sanctioned by MPs Lawrence Scott and Neville Tyrrell, who were present.

inviting members of the organised kite flying groups, representatives of the BPS and the Department of Public Prosecutions (DPPs) office to discuss the law and the issues via a radio or television talk show in an effort to educate the public, as well as to receive feedback.

One major concern was the fact that some people would usually cut the string attached to the kite and it was made abundantly clear that doing so is potentially very dangerous as the string can then be caught anywhere, which can cause serious injury to individuals, especially bike riders or other commuters.

It was also mentioned that the majority of persons flying kites are members of an organised group who love the Bermuda culture of kite flying and wish for the culture to stay alive.

As requested by those in attendance, it is hoped that at future meetings – to be held in the central and eastern parishes – a representative from the DPPs office can attend.