Legislation (H.B. 2535) that would have made it a criminal offense to disturb the peace with "noise from an exhaust system of any vehicle that is not equipped or constructed to prevent any disturbing or unreasonably loud noise" died when the legislature adjourned for the year. Under the bill, vehicle owners convicted of a violation would have been fined up to $1,000 per occurrence, confined up to 6 months in jail or both.
Current West Virginia law only allows a muffler originally installed by the manufacturer or an equivalent. The law provides no objective noise measurement standard for exhaust systems that would benefit consumers, industry and police officers charged with enforcing the law. The term “disturbing or unreasonably loud” is highly subjective and open to wide interpretation.