Estral Beach in Monroe County Michigan is Quaint

 The forbidden Jake Brake is an outstanding invention to assist safe operation of diesel-powered trucks when braking is required.  Through a connection of the Cummins engine company with a family friend Jacobs, the inventor of the Jacobs drill chuck, the invention if a practical engine compression brake was perfected.

Since the invention of the Jacobs brand engine brake, other inventors have similar ways to achieve engine braking which produce the same sound of the Jacobs brake.  There is legal problem here in that the city would appear to need to prove that a Jacobs brand brake created any offensive noise in violation of  the federal government has requirement that all vehicles manufactured since 1978 to meet noise requirements.

When applied, these brakes make a distinctive sound in the engine exhaust stacks that some people find annoying if the exaust system has been modified.  Cities in which I have worked from Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada to the east and west cost of the United States typically enact ordnances limiting the use of engine compression brakes and post signs such as “The use of engine brakes is Forbidden” and the fine for a non-emergency violation is (state amount). 

The Jacobs brake people go so far as to ask anyone seeing these "brand specific" signs to E-mail the location to them. If you see a "jake brake" sign, send the route number, city/town, and state where you saw it to  This sign has been reported to Jacobs.

Berlin Township Michigan government is often in a state of turmoil, so silly laws just might be expected.  The only thing that they seem to want is more and more trailer parks.


   The residents should not have much problem with engine brakes given the 15 MPH speed limit.  The population of under 500 people from time to time have had a police department.  The main problem are the rowdy youth who have been known to shoot up the town and even set fire to cars owned by rival gangs from other towns who invade their territory.  Here is an example of poor marksmanship in that no one hit the P or D.

  The municipal building serves all functions from a social hall for wedding receptions to a jail. This has caused conflicts of use.  One woman was handcuffed during a wedding reception with her arms around a building support post for letting her kids run wild.

NOTICE: It is assumed that all sinage you see here is there by permit, common law, by right or approved by the appropriate official.  Various zoning and public safety ordnances may place limitations on signs in terms of content, placement, style, size, and number per parcel.  Just because you see them on this web site does not mean that they are lawful or unlawful.

Jacobs Drill Chuck Company

Jacobs Vehicle Systems Heritage

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©David Alkire Smith Photographic Collection

Signs of Monroe


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