LETTER: Greenwich Needs Protection from Gas Powered Leaf Blowers More than from Chickens

Submitted By Guy L. Smith, Greenwich

As Greenwich residents roll into the new year all can rest easy with the new protections that the Greenwich Planning and Zoning Commission are providing. Just this past week the Commission made the very bold decision to restrict killer chickens from the yards of Greenwich residents, keeping them at least 50 feet from anyone. We are blessed to have such protections!

Much ado has been made of chickens’ unreasonably loud noises and the spoiling of yards. Why it has even been said that Greenwich is ‘not a farming community” and that these killer chickens are “a major health hazard.”

All this is just lovely for a “non-farming community” to worry about. 

But while protecting us from these killer chickens it would really be swell if our town leaders would recognize the major health hazard from gas-powered leaf blowers which are blithely wailing at all hours and zero attention to what lame regulations the Town has, and with a police department that is subjected to enforcement, but rightly feels that preventing armed robberies and murders is really their job. (Will the GPD have to wage war against killer chickens too?)

Leaf blowers damage the soil, the air, plants, and create severe health hazards for operators (who rarely have ear covers) and actually create more air pollution than a pickup truck.

The major health hazard in Greenwich is not Henrietta the Hen. The major health hazard, not to mention severe auditory annoyance, is unreasonably loud leaf-blowers run by landscapers who thumb their noses at Town Hall because they know there is zero enforcement and even hostility from law enforcement to residents who complain.

Is it really reasonable and a good use of the town leader’s efforts to corral chicks which you can hear maybe at 50 feet, but not a leaf blower that you can hear at a mile?

We need to do better.

Guy L. Smith has been a Greenwich resident for 39 years