Sent: Tuesday, March 01, 2016 8:03 AM
Subject: RE: 12/22/15 - West Springfield
Thank you for your email concerning aircraft noise. I appreciate you taking the time to share your concerns with our office and apologize for the delay in this response. I understand that aircraft noise may be disruptive and result in a variety of effects. The FAA has a long history of studying noise related effects in order to minimize them to the extent possible through research and development, and mitigation measures.
The FAA’s mission is to ensure the safe and efficient use of our nation’s navigable airspace. The agency does not have the authority to prohibit aircraft overflights of a particular geographic area unless the operation is unsafe, or the aircraft is operated in a manner inconsistent with Federal Aviation Regulations. In order to handle air traffic demands, runway configurations are used in accordance with runway selection criteria. Air Traffic's runway selection is based on several factors which include the following: runway availability, wind, weather, operational efficiency, and noise considerations.
Airports are responsible for their noise impact on the communities they occupy. Please contact the Metropolitan Washington Airport Authority (MWAA) for more information on their noise abatement procedures and noise restriction hours. Here is the link to MWAA’s Aircraft Noise webpage, which includes information on how to contact their office: http://www.flyreagan.com/dca/reagan-national-aircraft-noise-information
Our office has received many complaints from people in Virginia, Maryland, and Washington, D.C. regarding the noise from operations at DCA. MWAA has established an airport/community noise roundtable forum to discuss the concerns that community residents have over aircraft noise. The FAA has been in direct communication with representatives from MWAA concerning an increase in inquiries from residents around DCA and is supporting the roundtable. At the December roundtable meeting, the roundtable agreed upon a recommendation to MWAA for submittal to the FAA for further analysis. That recommendation and other information from the roundtable can be found at: http://www.flyreagan.com/dca/community-working-group
More information about aviation noise is available on the Federal Aviation Administration website and the ASCENT NoiseQuest website: http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/apl/noise_emissions/airport_aircraft_noise_issues/
I realize that this response may not provide you with the desired relief from aircraft noise that you requested in your email message. However the FAA is continuing to manage the national airspace system in a safe and efficient manner while also continuing to develop measures to reduce noise from aircraft in the future.
Andrea S Freeburg
Assistant to the Noise Ombudsman
Federal Aviation Administration