The past couple of weeks have been a bit tumultuous in cities across Louisiana. We've had tornadoes and straight-line wind damage in Youngsville. Lake Charles and Lafayette have reported storm damage too. And over the past couple of days, much of the state has gotten a good soaking as well.

Live and Local via YouTube
Live and Local via YouTube
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Granted a good soaking is better than three or four months of drought like we experienced last year. Still, the heavy rains bring their own set of problems. The more rain we have the more mosquitoes we seem to get.

Heavy rain also makes the grass grow. This means someone has to go out and mow that grass, especially if you live in a neighborhood with an HOA or a city that has restrictions on grass and weed growth on private property.

Paul Felberbauer via Unsplash.com
Paul Felberbauer via Unsplash.com
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We've had a couple of days when there was no rain and with the weekend here, a lot of people will be cutting grass this weekend. But, now we have the issue of temperatures in the mid 90's to deal with. That means a lot of grass-cutting will take place in the early morning hours of Saturday. But how early is too early?

Dmitrri/ThinkStock
Dmitrri/ThinkStock
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When is the Earliest You Can Use Power Equipment in Lafayette Louisiana?

The answer to that question is governed by the Lafayette Consolidated Government's sound ordinance. You know the same ordinance, that is the reason events such as Patty in the Parc have to shut down at 10 pm in Parc International.

According to the ordinance, based on my understanding, the earliest you can crank that mower, whack those weeds, or blow away debris is 7 am.  Here's how a portion of the ordinance reads from the LCG website.

Power tools and landscaping and yard maintenance equipment shall not be operated on residential property between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m

The ordinance varies just a bit when the "yard work" is being done at a commercial or industrial location next to a residential area. A portion of the ordinance that applies to that situation reads as follows:

Power tools and landscaping and yard maintenance equipment, excluding emergency work, shall not be operated within 250 feet of a residential property line when operated on commercial or industrial property, between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. on weekdays, or between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. on weekends...

I would say in the "world of reasonable people" these ordinances and their time restrictions make perfect sense. But when the heat index is already in the low 90s at 7 am and well into the triple-digits by noon as much as I try to abide by the rules and love my neighbors, I really want to cut my grass as soon as it's light enough to do so.

Staff Photo
Staff Photo
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If you're not sure of when it gets "light enough to mow" the official sunrise is 6:06 am in Lafayette today. But it's light enough to mow at 5:30. While I have focused on how early you can mow the ordinance does allow for lawn care into the darkness.

So, basically, LCG says it's not okay to wake people up with your leaf blower but you can sure as hell keep them from sleeping by blowing leaves and grass trimmings until 10 at night. Just for transparency, I wake up to come to work at midnight and people cutting grass in the early evening hours are just as much of a pain to me as those who cut grass at 7 in the morning are to you.

Jarrad Provost via You Tube
Jarrad Provost via You Tube
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Oh, and don't forget there are rules about how high your grass can grow according to LCG as well. In the city of Lafayette, your grass can't be more than 12 inches high. In the unincorporated parts of the parish, it's 24 inches. So, they can make you cut your grass but not before 7 am.

If you wanted to put goats on your property to trim the lawn, I guess you could but only temporarily. Here's what LCG says about livestock in residential neighborhoods. 

Laughing Goat
Steve Frost, Think Stock
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Okay, that's all tongue in cheek but could we get a variance on lawn care for an hour in the summertime? There's a big difference between 6 am and 7 am on my thermometer. Of course, you're only breaking the ordinance if someone complains, right?

And speaking of your lawn and keeping it from cooking in the heat, LCG watering restrictions are in place for the summer months.

lus.org
lus.org
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So, now you know when you can mow grass when you can water grass, and whether you can hire animals, other than your own children, to do the work in your yard for you. And if you're wondering what else has people up in arms in all of this heat, you can try these on for size too.

10 Little Things that Grind Our Gears in a Great Big Way

The following items are the kind of things that might not even hit your radar on a normal day. However, on a day when all the little things are not going your way, these might just send you over the edge. It's better you laugh at them now, instead of blowing a gasket and having to call a lawyer later.

Gallery Credit: Bruce Mikells

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