FAA study says five times as many people suffer from high aircraft noise

The FAA released a bombshell study: Five times as many people suffer from high aircraft noise

Cancel the F-35 – James Marc Leas, March 8, 2021

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1. A newly released FAA study indicates that five times as many people are suffering from high aircraft noise than the FAA and Air Force previously revealed. Based on this finding, the FAA is seeking public comment before initiating review of its current 65 decibel DNL noise standard for airports and considering future FAA noise initiatives to reduce public exposure to aircraft noise.

The public comment period, that ends next Monday, March 15, offers supporters of the military-industrial complex, the chief promoter of aircraft noise in densely populated areas, the opportunity to disparage the newly released study results.

But the public comment period also offers members of the public the chance to counter that by describing their own experiences with such high-noise aircraft as the F-35. And by stating that the public is increasingly aware that repeated exposure to high aircraft noise levels can cause permanent hearing damage, learning difficulties for children—including lower reading scores, degraded problem solving ability, reduced concentration and impaired memory—and accelerated cognitive decline for older adults, as well as cardiovascular problems. The experience of people actually exposed to such high aircraft noise along with the science, much of it reported by the US Air Force itself, offer the best explanation for the surprisingly high severe annoyance level found by the FAA in the new report.

The 50 year old FAA data from the 1970’s, that up to now has been relied upon by the FAA, showed that just 12.3% of people living in the 65 decibel average noise zone were “severely annoyed.” Based on more recent carefully controlled surveys, the newly released FAA data shows that over 60% of those people are severely annoyed by aircraft noise, that severe annoyance extends to much lower aircraft noise levels, and that all noise levels show a similar shockingly high increase in severe annoyance.

In particular, the new data shows that even at an average aircraft noise level of 55 decibels, over 30% of people are severely annoyed and at an average noise level of 50 decibels, the number severely annoyed is still about 20%.

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Public comment period expired March 15.