Flying Friendly Response

Letter to the Editor VIA E-MAIL

I just read Robert A. Wiswell?s letter (Flying Friendly) in the Nov/Dec 2003 issue. I have never read anything so outrageous in my time as a pilot. Mr. Wiswell knows that according to existing case law, any noise mitigation measure must be reasonable, non-arbitrary and non-discriminatory. Yet with full knowledge of this key point, he purposely omits it from his letter and instead hopes to intimidate pilots into thinking that unless we unconditionally cooperate with unreasonable, arbitrary and discriminatory noise abatement measures and generally acquiesce, airports will impose more drastic restrictions or even close. Perhaps Mr. Wiswell could offer his opinions as to why any noise mitigation measure, even if voluntary, that is in place or proposed at any airport is in fact reasonable, non-arbitrary and non-discriminatory. Acquiescence and fear of noise issues has beleaguered our airports, not resistance or a competent challenge of reasonableness.

Readers should recall what the late Nubar Deombeleg wrote when he was the Editor:

?Over the years, pilots have tried to accommodate to the concerns of local communities in a desire to get along with the community. What has this accomplished? Unfortunately, in one location after another the result has been restrictive noise abatement measures that compromise safety…and simply re-enforce the power of anti-airport groups seeking to close airports. Thus the willingness of pilots to be conciliatory and get along with noisy anti-airport groups has been largely counterproductive, strengthening the latter?s demands for more restrictions or outright closure.?

When Mr. Wiswell, or anyone else, uses intimidation as a means to promulgate unreasonable noise abatement measures and coerce pilot compliance, based upon such things as fear of public backlash and more drastic measures, it is actually an admission that the measure(s) are in some fashion unreasonable, arbitrary and discriminatory, plus a misrepresentation that an airport proprietor has some sort of legal authority to control Pilot-in-Command activity. This is neither competent airport management nor true noise mitigation because it perpetuates something that is not true or correct.

Respectfully Submitted,

Jon Rodgers