Letters to the Editor

Letter to the Editor: Islanders are taking action to address airplane noise

A 2009 Senate study initiated by Sen. Karen Keiser reported that by 2030 Seattle can expect more than 630,000 commercial airplane flights per year into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. With Vashon-Maury Island currently slated as a main overfly zone, that’s an alarming projection. It’s not difficult to imagine what this increase in overflight travel will sound like in our rural region, a region with an ambient noise level quite different from the urban areas across the pond.

Because The Beachcomber has reported on this noise issue during the past year, I thought it might be helpful to let Islanders know that there is an active committee working to petition the FAA to have air travel over Vashon-Maury Island occur at higher altitudes. These higher flight paths would greatly diminish a noise and air pollution problem that some Islanders feel is intolerable. Our committee’s name is Fly Higher Over Vashon-Maury Island.

What exactly are we doing? Gay Rosser and I have been in consistent communication with our elected officials and the Port of Seattle and have also established a friendly rapport with the FAA’s representatives for the Pacific Northwest. But we need more voices in the dialogue.

Interested Islanders can contact the committee at 605-4776. We’d like to hear your viewpoints, concerns and experiences. All of this data is handed over to the officials who will assist us with our aim. Or you can join us over on our new Facebook page for timely news and updates: facebook.com/vashonoverflight.

For those who want to “nosedive” right into the discussion, please attend the critical Part 150 Study meeting on Oct. 27, headed by the Port of Seattle. Facts and figures from the meeting will impact future decisions the FAA makes about our region. See the calendar listing in this issue of The Beachcomber for more details.

— Frederick Woodruff

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