FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 20, 2016
MEDIA CONTACTS: Carole Trottere, Rebecca Cheng, Sam Marksheid, and Vicki DiStefano | (516) 869-7794
Supervisor Bosworth Urges FAA to Reroute Air Traffic To Lower Noise for North Hempstead Neighborhoods
North Hempstead, NY – North Hempstead Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth is urging the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to mitigate the incessant aircraft noise over North Hempstead by redirecting air traffic to approach JFK Airport from the south and by lowering the aircraft noise threshold from 65 DNL to 55 DNL. DNL stands for the day-night average sound level or an average noise level over a 24-hour period.
“The Town frequently receives calls and emails from constituents who are woken early, kept awake or forced inside by low flying aircraft,” Supervisor Bosworth said. “Moreover, persistent aircraft noise is not merely an annoyance, it is hazardous to our health. Like many other communities, residents of our Town work hard to enjoy an excellent quality of life. This is being threatened by the constant drone of low flying aircrafts. Many Town residents are upset and I share their frustration.”
Supervisor Bosworth wrote to FAA Administrator Michael Huerta and stated:
“At a recent New York Community Aviation Roundtable meeting, the FAA represented that, for safety reasons, airplanes must land into the wind. However, on several recent occasions, when the wind was light and its direction varied, aircrafts circled over the Town and approached JFK airport from the north. June 6th was one of those days and many of my constituents registered complaints…In these conditions, aircrafts could have approached from any direction, yet they approached the airport from the north, passing over parts of the Town at an altitude of less than 1,500 feet, subjecting Town residents to constant, deafening aircraft noise…
As you already know from studies commissioned by the FAA, any noise above 55 DNL increases the risk of cardiovascular disease. Indeed, a recent study from the Harvard School of Public Health found that for every 10 decibels of airplane noise, the risk of cardiovascular hospitalization increases by 3.5 percent. The study also found that ZIP codes with higher airplane noise have more heart-related hospitalizations. This is why many countries and organizations, including the Environmental Protection Agency, and the World Health Organization use 55 DNL as their accepted threshold. I encourage you to follow their lead. Many Town residents are upset and I share their frustration. Senator Charles Schumer has already written to you, asking you to take action and we are grateful for his leadership. I too am asking you to take action by directing aircrafts to approach JFK Airport from the south and by reducing the aircraft noise threshold from 65 DNL to 55 DNL.”
In 2015 the Town created two committees to serve in an advisory role to elected officials in the Town on the issue of airplane noise. The committees produced a airplane noise newsletter in April 2016 that is available on the Town’s website.
The Town of North Hempstead’s Aircraft Noise Technical Advisory Committee is chaired by Len Schaier of Port Washington and the Town’s Aircraft Noise Public Education and Outreach Committee is chaired by New Hyde Park resident Fran Gould.
For more information about the committees, call 311.