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IHOP Fined for Noise from Bacon Buster

Smog hogSandy Berger The ventilator unit.

After neighbors complained for weeks about the “constant roar” and “inescapable blare” of IHOP’s new ventilator unit, the restaurant on East 14th Street was issued a noise violation on Monday, the Department of Environmental Protection said.

The noise from the ventilator, which was installed after complaints about an unbearable smell of bacon, had caused neighbors to file at least four complaints with the DEP. On Monday, the restaurant was smacked with $560 in fines, said Ted Timbers, a spokesperson for the agency.

But neighbors will have to keep complaining before they can get their peace and quiet: Mr. Timbers said the DEP can’t serve IHOP with an order to cease and desist until it has been issued three separate violations, and the Environmental Control Board won’t make a ruling about the first one until Sept. 10.

Mary Beth Powers, a neighbor of the pancake house, felt the city wasn’t doing enough. “Factory restaurants like IHOP don’t belong directly beneath people’s homes,” she said. “The city is so worried about our health that they want to ban mega-sodas and cigarettes (ideas that have merit); I wish they would extend that concern to making sure that commercial establishments located in heavily populated neighborhoods don’t make those areas uninhabitable.”

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this post referred to the ventilation unit as a “smog-hog.” That reference has been deleted since the term is a brand name and Smog Hog says that it did not manufacture the unit in question.

Air-Conditioned Nightmare Continues, Deli’s Neighbors Say

IMG_1771Sarah Darville Tommy McKean in the air shaft of his building.

This feud over an air conditioning unit certainly isn’t cooling off.

Employees of a Hamptons Market Place at 356 East 13th Street switched off power to their entire building this morning, leaving 16 apartments without electricity for about an hour. Outraged tenants said it’s only the latest disruption that has been inflicted on them by the deli, which installed an air conditioner and ventilator unit on the roof that has bothered them to no end.

The owner of the deli, who has grown weary of a year of noise complaints, is so fed up that today he raised the possibility of a harassment suit against the tenants.

“I can’t get a psychiatrist to come into their apartments but I wish I could,” the owner, Victor Nagi said, later adding, “The tenants are harassing me. They’re complaining every other day and getting me these fines.” Read more…

A Flood on Second Avenue (This One Man-Made)

Road workStephen Rex Brown

Workers with the city Department of Environmental Protection are pumping water out of a ditch in the middle of Second Avenue near St. Marks Place, blasting water into the bus lane and diverting another lane of traffic. The noisy water pumps drew many onlookers. The Local has a call into D.E.P. regarding the nature of the work; we’ll update as soon as we know more.

Update | 3:48 p.m. Here are the details from a D.E.P. spokeswoman: “A D.E.P. crew observed that a four-foot diameter brick sewer was broken. A D.E.P. contractor is excavating to repair it. We will place a plate to make the area safe while working. It will take a few days.”