After considering a complete ban of leaf blowers in the city, the Palm Springs City Council instead elected to ban gas-powered models. The move will force the areas landscapers, to purchase battery-operated machines if they wish to continue using leaf blowers when providing service. The switched force to battery-powered blowers is a cost prohibitive measure that will likely not result in a significant reduction of noise.
During the City Council hearing many landscape professionals expressed concern landscape that their work would become much more difficult without leaf blowers. As one landscaper who spoke at the meeting put it, “You wouldn’t send a cardiovascular surgeon in to do surgery with a steak knife.” In testimony they also pointed out that while electric blowers are slightly quieter than their gas counterparts, most models don’t work well in intense heat and require frequent battery changes.
The new ordinance stipulates gas-powered leaf blowers must be phased out by 2019. Currently, any type of leaf blower can be used in residential areas from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and in commercial areas from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day.
NALP opposes bans on leaf-blowers and other landscaping equipment. Such measures unfairly target landscape professionals and impact their ability to provide services. We are working closely with OPEI and other industry stakeholders to better educate decision makers on alternatives to leaf blower restrictions and encourage landscape professionals to contact Paul Mendelsohn immediately if a punitive leaf blower ordinance is proposed in your community.