Town Square

Post a New Topic

Too much noise!

Original post made by Luanne, Downtown North, on Jun 1, 2015

Plane, after plane, after plane, non-stop for hours. What is going on? Is anyone noticing this problem tonight?

Comments (223)

18 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:17 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Reviewing the last 2 hours of flights over Palo Alto I see nothing unusual and no SFO bound plane below 4000 ft over Palo Alto.


23 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:22 pm

Thanks goodness, Mr Carpenter, an Atherton resident, is here to tell us that an whole trail of commercial jets at about 4,000 feet is normal above Palo Alto, just par for the course.

How would you like to have the same SFO traffic above Atherton, I wonder, Mr Carpenter, if it was to happen? I am talking about all those A320s, B737s, B747s and other assorted large jets, not the smaller corporate jets that Atherton seems to get at times.


5 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:25 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"How would you like to have the same SFO traffic above Atherton,"

Actually a good deal of SFO bound traffic does fly as near my home as it does to my Palo Alto homes.

Web Link

Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:30 pm

[Post removed.]


31 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:31 pm

I walk out of my house and hear planes whining overhead, I walk to the park and there are planes whining overhead, I get in and out of my car and there are planes whining overhead. It's all day long with some hours worse than others. I can't fall asleep until after 1am because they are still flying over during the middle of the night.


18 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:39 pm

Luanne

I'm noticing the problem tonight too and dread this happening when the weather is better.



20 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:48 pm

Mr Carpenter,

One the flights you link to is headed to SQL and is not SFO traffic. I looked at the last two hours of traffic that you looked at, and guess what? I saw only one large jet over Atherton that would be about equivalent to the many we had over Palo Alto during the same time period.

While you do get some SFO traffic, which I do not deny, it is for the most part either smaller, quieter jets or jets that fly much higher over Atherton, on their way to... Palo Alto most often where they turn north.

[Portion removed.]


27 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:52 pm

I agree - Thank you for commenting. It's nice to know that someone else in my area is hearing all this noise.

It's not just once in awhile it is several planes every half hour. Life has really changed here and I can't imagine how bad it will be during the summer months when we all have our windows open. I have double paned windows and still can hear the noise loudly. It's very tiring and upsetting.


13 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 1, 2015 at 9:53 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

My Take - I just deal with facts - I really don't care where a poster lives. Facts are facts. And there is ZERO low level SFO traffic over Palo Alto. Look at East Palo Alto, the Willows. east Menlo Park, Redwood Shores and points North if you want to see low level SFO inbound traffic.


28 people like this
Posted by anonymous
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jun 1, 2015 at 10:01 pm

A ton of noisy commercial planes overhead tonight here in Duveneck St. Francis neighborhood - and we have double paned window. Never used to be anything like this - it's awful and too much.


17 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 1, 2015 at 10:03 pm

I see. So, a plane flying at 3,900 feet over Palo Alto is not low, while if it flies at 3,900 feet East Palo Alto, it is low, per what you say.

I also note that you just dropped your argument about traffic above Atherton to return to another theme you use a lot, other nearby towns. I do not see how the real plight of those towns make the real noise over PA any more acceptable. (And no, not all flights that come across above PA then fly on to East PA or eastern MP. Quite a fair number cross over directly to the Bay, via the Baylands, by the way). Finally, as a matter of fact, solving the noise problem over PA would also help alleviate it above EPA and eastern MP.


23 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 1, 2015 at 10:04 pm

Luanne,

also have double pane, all windows closed, and it's loud.




20 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 1, 2015 at 10:08 pm

If you have not yet, please go sign the petition (Reduce Aircraft Noise over Palo Alto and Neighboring Communities) at

Web Link

and check out the Palo Alto Sky Posse group at

Web Link


22 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 1, 2015 at 10:18 pm

I will sign the petition. Thank you for letting me know. My family and I are exhausted from the constant noise.


22 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 1, 2015 at 10:32 pm

I am so sorry Luanne. What I can tell you is that you are not alone in your misery. Many hundreds of people have already spoken up and there are people working on the issue. The more people sign the petition, and also the more people participate in the local actions, the better our chances of solving this problem. Thanks for speaking up and for signing the petition. Spread the word!


18 people like this
Posted by pareto
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 1, 2015 at 11:06 pm

So, one man, called Peter Carpenter, from Atherton, apparently believes the daily constant, and constantly increasing, noise assault that we are experiencing is absolutely OK. Everyone else, those actually living in Palo Alto, is shocked beyond belief at the audacity that SFO has shown, in helping steer virtually all Southern traffic descent over Palo Alto and virtually all Northern and Western traffic, away from San Mateo county (their lessor and business partner). They have received lots of noise complaints from Palo Alto. And this is apparently their response. 4000 feet in continuing rapid succession is completely unprecedented and entirely unacceptable of course.

A lot of people are upset, some are suffering considerable health damage, and for what? There is plenty of space above the Bay for more reasonable descents. SFO traffic growth has basically been anemic over the last decade, and now they are doing this to Palo Alto, and there is no way to hold them accountable?


3 people like this
Posted by Troll Spotter
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Jun 1, 2015 at 11:56 pm

[Post removed.]


Posted by Memories
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood

on Jun 2, 2015 at 12:19 pm


Remember me?
Forgot Password?
Due to violations of our Terms of Use, comments from this poster are only visible to registered users who are logged in. Use the links at the top of the page to Register or Login.


7 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 2, 2015 at 12:39 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"So, one man, called Peter Carpenter, from Atherton, apparently believes the daily constant, and constantly increasing, noise assault that we are experiencing is absolutely OK"

Wrong - I never said that. And I have consistently stated that I acknowledge that some people are both aware of and bothered by airplane noise.

" Everyone else, those actually living in Palo Alto, is shocked beyond belief"
Wrong, everyone else has not said that; 99% of the Palo Alto residents haven't said a word about being shocked and pareto is not their spokesperson.

Here is what I DID post:
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
22 hours ago
Peter Carpenter is a registered user.
sketchy - in my decades of dealing with airplane noise complaints and my 5? years of experience with Town Forum discussions on airplane noise I have come to appreciate that:
1 - the majority of people who complain sincerely believe that they are being significantly and personally impacted by airplane noise
2 -some of these people engage, like we all sometimes do, in both hyperbole and exaggeration in order to emphasize and justify their complaints
3 - the only way to have a fact based discussion is to encourage people to provide date, time, place information which can then be used to independently assess what actually happened.
4 - no amount of data can deny how a person feels but the documented facts can be used to stimulate timely discussion and decisions regarding what public policy changes are appropriate.


9 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 2, 2015 at 12:45 pm

Pareto,

SFO's volume of traffic has been recovering steadily from the post 911 low in air travel, and has just in the last year or two recovered to the pre-911 high in air travel.

In spite of the wishful thinking in the aviation industry, long term trends in air travel are "anemic". It is yet to be seen whether the airline industry will be able to grow beyond the pre-911 highs set in the late 1990s.

Still, there is a way for air traffic to grow without an increase in air travel. The airline industry has be eying the success of Southwest Airlines, and many larger airlines are considering moving to a new business model, replacing larger planes with more numerous smaller aircraft, that woulds allow them to offer travelers more departure-time options.


8 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 2, 2015 at 1:02 pm

For new posters that have been drawn to Palo Alto Online by the dramatic increase in aircraft noise over Palo Alto, please be aware of Palo Alto Online's "terms of use".

If someone posts a condescending, or vexatious, comment, it is better not to respond in kind.

Palo Alto Online's "terms of use": Web Link


4 people like this
Posted by @ Luanne
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 2, 2015 at 1:44 pm

Luanne, if you are being annoyed so badly by the noise, do what the citizens of Phoenix did and join up with other residents being driven mad and losing sleep from the noise. Hire an attorney and challenge the FAA.

In Phoenix, the FAA was forced to concede to the residents of the city and surrounding suburbs who were sleepless, interrupted at work and school, etc by the noise. The FAA must change the flight patterns and raise the elevation several thousand feet so people can have some peace.

Still, in all honesty, I don't think the problems in Atherton, Palo Alto,etc are nearly as bad as in the Rose Garden of San Jose, where the Mineta-bound planes shake the buildings to their foundations day and night.


6 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 2, 2015 at 1:52 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"In Phoenix, the FAA was forced to concede to the residents of the city and surrounding suburbs who were sleepless, interrupted at work and school, etc by the noise. The FAA must change the flight patterns and raise the elevation several thousand feet so people can have some peace."

Wrong - the suit was just filed yesterday - the FAA has not been "forced to concede to the residents of the city and surrounding suburbs".

Please get your facts straight before posting incorrect and misleading information.


14 people like this
Posted by Mickey
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 2, 2015 at 2:12 pm

My reaction to this post: I work at home, go to the park, take walks, go for runs, garden, and barely notice the planes. I think some people will find this troubling. I think this is all a form of "group OCD." I'm very serious. Airplanes are a part of life - its all part of the world around us. Humidity levels, cloud cover, weather conditions may make the patterns change, but its all just part of "world noise."

If you aren't careful, you can start to become hyper-focused on any particular noise element and it might make you very uncomfortable. All of a sudden every plane starts to consume you. A never ending parade of horrible noise. You can't make it go away, but you can train yourself not to focus on it, and not to "judge" each one.


3 people like this
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 2, 2015 at 3:42 pm

My take is that a plane over head traveling at a very high speed in a descending path could run into problems - the pilot - the plane itself - and if it goes down then whole blocks will be wiped out - as well as the passengers on the plane.

Altitude 4,000 is not very much relative to plane speed - and NexGen was based on the theory that the airlines were going to run out and buy bigger, quieter jets. Has that happened? NO

The planes overhead are whining, grinding, and are old. The wild card is maintenance. Rick wants to turn the jets around as fast as possible to save money but there has to be a down time to overhaul and checkout any plane that has traveled a large number of hours in possibly bad weather creating turbulence.

Higher altitude gives the pilot and air controllers more time to coordinate any issues and provides a better safety net for the people on the ground.
Going to the 5,000 altitude over the peninsula would provide everyone with a better life condition. That does not seem to be such a big issue to resolve so why the resistence?


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 2, 2015 at 4:02 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Rumors to the contrary the sky is not falling:

Aircraft accident rates at historic low despite high-profile plane crashes

Web Link


10 people like this
Posted by pareto
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 2, 2015 at 4:32 pm

So Peter, since you believe in hard facts, as I do, let me first correct you on this one: "99% of Palo Alto residents haven't said a word about being shocked" --- Wrong (using your succinct language, which doesn't bother me BTW). Just go to the online petition:

Web Link

More importantly, let me ask you this:

1.) If the data indeed were to show that most of the descent noise has been shifted from San Mateo communities to Palo Alto, would you be for a more equitable distribution?

2.) Are you at all for an equitable distribution of noise between communities, located at similar distances from the airport, to the extent it can be achieved?

3.) What about solutions that help everyone, e.g. Palo Alto and ALL of its neighboring communities, including Atherton, avoid all or most of the SFO, OAK and SJC noise of aircraft descending overland below 6000 feet, even it costs the airlines a few dollars, say $1 per seat per arriving flight?

Pareto


3 people like this
Posted by Not a problem
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 2, 2015 at 4:35 pm

"The planes overhead are whining, grinding, and are old."
I would like to see the data for this claim.
I also recall a claim about issues with the 4 AM United flight from Hawaii. The poster claimed that this late night flight was an issue for the Hawaii airport from which it departed-- something about all night stuff. Of course withnthentime change that flight leaves at 9 pm Hawaii time.


6 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 2, 2015 at 4:50 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I stand corrected 97.8% of the Palo Alto population have not "said a word about being shocked " by airplane noise.

Questions from an anonymous poster:
1.) If the data indeed were to show that most of the descent noise has been shifted from San Mateo communities to Palo Alto, would you be for a more equitable distribution?

If the data showed that there is a greater total ground noise footprint over any particular community then there would be a valid interest in seeing if a more equitable ground noise footprint were achievable.

2.) Are you at all for an equitable distribution of noise between communities, located at similar distances from the airport, to the extent it can be achieved?

I am for equitable ground noise footprint for all communities.

3.) What about solutions that help everyone, e.g. Palo Alto and ALL of its neighboring communities, including Atherton, avoid all or most of the SFO, OAK and SJC noise of aircraft descending overland below 6000 feet, even it costs the airlines a few dollars, say $1 per seat per arriving flight?

There is no conceivable way that all traffic into SFO, Oak and SJC below 6000 ft be kept over the Bay - it is just physically impossible. There is not enough space over the Bay and planes that MUST land into the prevailing northerly winds cannot approach SJC from the North.


11 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 2, 2015 at 4:57 pm

Mickey,

Consider yourself lucky that you are still able to force the noise out of your mind, but remember... it is only going to get worse.

The roll-out of the noisy "nextgen" air-routes has only just begun in the Bay Area. Once the "nextgen" routes are in place, they will be used to fulfill their ultimate purpose... increasing airspace capacity (more planes!).

How much worse does it have to get, before you can no longer force the noise out of your mind?


8 people like this
Posted by Pareto
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 2, 2015 at 5:04 pm

Peter,

In due respect, how is 97.8% a "hard fact"? How would you know what the remaining 97.8% of Palo Altans think or have said? And, as you well know, it is generally accepted that for each person, who takes the trouble to sign a petition, there are quite a few more who think the same way. There is no need for sarcasm nor mockery of the now more than 1,400 signatories.

Pareto


4 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 2, 2015 at 5:16 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"In due respect, how is 97.8% a "hard fact"? How would you know what the remaining 97.8% of Palo Altans think or have said?"

You referenced the petition so that was your choice of a hard fact and that is how many people signed the petition. There is no way to know if there were multiple signatures by the same person nor is there any data on where they claimed to reside.

The petition is not restricted to Palo Alto residents ("Citizens Concerned With Aircraft Noise Bay Area signed this petition") so that 97.8% presumes that they were all Palo Alto residents - which is unlikely.

Suffice it to say that the number of individuals concerned with aircraft noise is small relative to other pressing local issues.


15 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 2, 2015 at 5:43 pm

There is too much airplane noise.

There are many pressing issues and quality of life ranks high up in pressing issues, what is more important than being able to have peace in your own town and in your own house?

If 100 people are concerned that seems serious enough for me. For busy people, one thousand is like serious as a heart attack I would say.


9 people like this
Posted by Pareto
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 2, 2015 at 6:05 pm


Peter,

I disagree with your logic. You used "99.5% have never said a word about being shocked [by the upsurge in airplane noise]" as a hard fact (presumably supported by the data that you demand as proof for such factual statements), and I simply pointed out that it's not.

I think we' argued enough on this point.

Pareto


Like this comment
Posted by pareto
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 2, 2015 at 6:09 pm

Correction: 99%, then 97.8%.


6 people like this
Posted by Resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 3, 2015 at 8:54 am

No - the sky is not falling. What is in the sky has the potential to fall. Note the number of foreign airlines that are now flying into SFO and San Jose.

Many of the foreign airlines are using older planes from the American fleet that they no longer want. And we have already read that many of the foreign pilots are not trained to manually fly the plane - only the computer is flying that plane. So someone has 1,00 flying hours - sitting in a seat does not qualify as being fully trained to fly a large plane. A number of reports on the planes crossing the airport to their gate and hitting other planes on the field - wings.

There is a major disconnect as to what the policy makers assume and what is reality. SFO and others are busy trying to bring in foreign airlines and when you are up at SFO and look at what is sitting on the field is many times old and under maintained. Many American companies are trying to remove and lease out their older planes that require more maintenance.
So where is the maintenance crew for the foreign airlines?

What is the worse are the 4 engine planes that are the biggest - and the lowest and slowest as they descend over your house. They have crossed the ocean from Asia in all types of turbulence - that is a long haul trip.

Don't forget the "other arrivals" at SFO and Oakland for FedEx, a Korean parts plane, etc which are not reflected in the arrivals listings of the official SFO web site. What you are looking at and what is happening has a disconnect.


10 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 3, 2015 at 8:59 am

Ten planes over my home in a 30 min period is unacceptable and a quality of life issue. It looks like the FAA was willing to work with the residents in Phoenix to some degree, so if our city officials can hear from Palo Alto residents about this issue maybe we have some hope that things can change. Does anyone know if the city is working on this issue?


1 person likes this
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 3, 2015 at 12:01 pm

Luanne - put a notepad by your bed and note the time the planes are over your house at night.

In the morning you can go to the Bruel & Kjaer tracking system (get from Google) - which you have bookmarked on your computer. There is a history section in the lower left corner - put in the time of day over your house. The program will show you the plane as it crosses the flight path - click on the plane - will tell you all about it and altitude as it is descending. You can see all planes in the area with this program.

Then go to the SFO Official Website - which you have bookmarked on your computer - there is a complaint section. File your complaint for the specific plane with SFO - or if a San Jose plane go to their website and file the complaint.

Get familiar with the information that is available to you and everyone else - the airports are all using the commercial program for Flight Tracker. Once you get use to working the systems you will be more conversant with the problem you are describing. You want to demonstrate that you have the capability to identify and report specific instances of problems. Making vague complaints is less useful to you.

It helps us all if more people have complaints on their (SFO, SJC, PAO)official sites because that is a computer documented artifact.


7 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 3, 2015 at 12:14 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" It looks like the FAA was willing to work with the residents in Phoenix to some degree,"

Yes the FAA was willing to work with the city - and what happened , the city sued the FAA.

Bye bye cooperation.


2 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 3, 2015 at 10:42 pm

Wow... Phoenix City Manager Ed Zuercher doesn't seem to think the FAA has been very cooperative! In the letter to FAA head Michael Huerta announcing the lawsuit, City Manager Zuercher say the FAA "appears to have been stringing the City along" with promises.

City of Phoenix's letter to FAA announcing lawsuit: Web Link


Like this comment
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 4, 2015 at 9:26 am

This morning San Jose is directing the their Southwest arrivals over South PA. I complained at 3,000 - after complaint sent in and received the next plane was directed directly over my house at 2,500 feet.

So that is how they role. You complain and they locate house and actually direct a plane over you head to say "So What?"

They do not care about the FAA, complaints from residences, Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Palo Alto.

It is Friday - these strange activities seem to happen on Friday - event day? Concert Day - you would think they would keep Shoreline clear for set-up of weekend activities.

Weather is clear and great - no reason for this.


5 people like this
Posted by The boat has sailed
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 4, 2015 at 9:40 am

uh, resident 1, today is Thursday.
And do you really expect us to believe that the control tower st SJC directed a plane over your house???
Why don't you provide us with the tracking information for these flight so we can check on your claims.
[Portion removed.]
There is no noise problem from airplanes that is specific to palo alto


2 people like this
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 4, 2015 at 10:39 am

If you look at the previous entries you can see all activity on the Bruel & Kjaen tracker. Okay - load it on your computer - do not expect everyone else to do your research. My complaints have been filed and they have a requirement to respond. Okay? Official complaints are not made to create a non-issue - they are required to document actual activity.
And where is "another Palo Alto Neighborhood" - in the hills?


4 people like this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 5, 2015 at 1:25 pm

Mickey raised an interesting point in a post on June 2:

"My reaction to this post: I work at home, go to the park, take walks, go for runs, garden, and barely notice the planes. I think some people will find this troubling. I think this is all a form of "group OCD." I'm very serious. Airplanes are a part of life - its all part of the world around us."

The argument "Airplanes are a part of life - its all part of the world around us." seems pretty similar to the argument "Oil spills are part of life. We all need petroleum".

People vary a lot in their sensitivity to aircraft noise. There is a linear relation (with a lot of scatter) between the percentage of a population that will be 'highly annoyed' and the DNL (cumulative average) level. What bothers one person will not affect another person at all. Neither is right nor wrong. Theoretically, it is possible to increase the noise enough that everyone would be 'highly annoyed' (even Peter Carpenter).

Airports are struggling with ways to increase capacity. Bruel & Kjaer (the consultants who make the noise monitoring equipment and software) published an interesting paper in 2003 (Fourth Generation Aviation Environment Management) in which they describe two constraints on airport growth: "physical capacity (terminal and runway) and environmental". Environmental capacity refers to the community's tolerance for noise. They describe "increasing use of sophisticated tolerance-building initiatives" to gradually acclimate communities to ever increasing levels of noise.

This is very much the 'boiling frog' approach. If this level of noise does not bother Mickey now, he (?she?) should just wait around for a while.


1 person likes this
Posted by anonymous
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jun 5, 2015 at 3:34 pm

Web Link

Here's a news story worth reading from The Chicago Tribune - air traffic issues are big there, too


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 5, 2015 at 3:50 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"46 percent of the total 408,468 complaints received in April came from 12 addresses, officials said."

12 people generated 187,895 complaints in a single month!

That is 15,658 per individual address per month!
Or 521 complaints per individual address per day!

This is why noise complaints tend to be heavily discounted by public policy makers.


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 5, 2015 at 6:37 pm

Does raise suspicion of "paid" complainers. It's Chicago.


3 people like this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 5, 2015 at 9:40 pm

Musical-

It is never a good idea to underestimate Chicago's ability for political corruption. Another possibility is that all these complaints come from Rahm Emmanuel's moles who are trying to undermine the credibility of legitimate comlaints.


1 person likes this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 5, 2015 at 9:48 pm



A combination of complaints with noise monitors would be a better way to monitor the situation.

And reports with aggregate air traffic numbers too.

At this point it's the airport's word against the people who are upset, and who are you going to trust? I would not trust the people who make the noise.


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 5, 2015 at 9:48 pm

Two sides to every coin.


3 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 5, 2015 at 10:00 pm

One side: Happy with the noise.

Other side: Not happy with the noise.

I trust the complaints of those unhappy with the noise - that's a genuine complaint.


7 people like this
Posted by AlexDeLarge
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 6, 2015 at 12:14 am

I was fairly removed from the airplane noise debate until I read the PA Online commentary. I have to agree that there is hella airline traffic over PA, but it's also over MP, LAH, ATH, etc. I occasionally stay ay my brothers house in Hillsbrough, LOUD! I've cut my air travel back to about four times a year, I feel I cannot complain because I exercise it's convenience.



9 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 6, 2015 at 12:53 am

Alex,

Just because you use a technology, doesn't mean you can't complain about it.

One upon a time, everybody drove cars that burned leaded gasoline. If people who drove cars didn't complain... we would all still be driving cars that burned leaded gas, and we would all still be inhaling the lead.

Maybe, the more you use a flawed technology, the more of a responsibility you have to complain about its flaws.


1 person likes this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 6, 2015 at 6:11 am

@ I agree -- sorry for the non-sequitur, I should have specified that my last comment was a response to Skydoc. Your comment got in a few seconds before mine.

And regarding noise sensors, I still feel there's no point in such a further expense for hardware until an effort is made to correlate the registered complaints to flight tracks and altitudes which are already monitored. We can identify what bothers people the most, and work towards mitigation. If a 747 is waking people at four in the morning, it doesn't matter whether it's 54 dBA or 68 dBA. We know the local sound level will drop if the path is raised in altitude or moved elsewhere.

If the FAA or SFO or the airlines claim they can reduce noise on the same paths by changing throttle settings or aircraft configuration, then we can suggest they quantify it with meters at their own expense, but still the level of complaints will be the relevant measure.

For those keeping score, this morning's Hawaii arrivals over Midtown:
Delta #1152 Boeing-757 4:46am 4200 ft
United #1724 Boeing-737 4:53am 6100 ft
United #1137 Boeing-737 5:01am 5000 ft
United #396 Boeing-777 5:04am 5500 ft
WebTrak time/altitude given where they crossed 101 just north of San Antonio, except #1137 was about 1 mile further south.

I missed the first one, but the highest noise level I got among the other 3 was a momentary 58 dBA for #396 directly overhead. All flights are quite noticeable at this hour because the ambient level is probably in the 20's, below the 32 dBA where my meter sensitivity ends. I'll note that by 5:30 the birds brought ambient up to 45 dBA with peaks at 50, not counting the occasional crow.


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 6, 2015 at 6:16 am

I should clarify, my dBA levels are outdoors under open sky.


5 people like this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 6, 2015 at 8:43 am

Good points, Musical.

I measured overhead sound for a time - ambient daytime noise in my part of Midtown was the mid to high 40s. Overhead planes usually scored in the high 50s to low 60s with an occasional 70.

As you know, the dBA measure discounts low frequency sound pressure and gives extra credit to higher frequency sound pressure. The rationale stated for this is that people are more sensitive to higher frequency sounds. (I think this is why the birds score so high!) The dBA would discount the low frequency rumble from the 747s and Airbus 380s. It would count he Airbus 320 whine, however.

The FAA has a vested interest in keeping things as they are. For this reason, I suspect people would have more confidence in measurements made by the City of Palo Alto.


4 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 6, 2015 at 9:30 am

musical,

"All flights are quite noticeable at this hour because the ambient level is probably in the 20's, below the 32 dBA"

Thank you for pointing this out. I is very quiet at night in Palo Alto so any noise is a big deal.

The expense of noise monitors seems very minimal compared to the waste of time arguing about what is noise, and it would supplement complaints.



Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 6, 2015 at 10:36 am

@ I agree (but I don't quite agree) -- as Skydoc points out, we'd just get into discussions between dB(A) and dB(C), dB(SPL), and the finer points of psophometric weighting. People hear sounds differently depending on age and whether they spent their teen years blasting hip-hop in their ear-buds. And even if we all had the same hearing, some would be disturbed by low frequencies and some by high. Noise will always be subjective to a large extent. And unless we had 100 monitors, few would be satisfied that their neighborhood was adequately instrumented. But true, any official impartial noise monitoring would supplement complaints.

Seems I recall one of the City working groups recently recommending $30,000 in airplane noise study funds. Maybe we'll get some proposed courses of action and cost estimates to pursue them. If noise sensors are installed, I'd hope we could tune them at minimal added expense to double as shot-spotters, and also as gas-powered leaf blower detectors.


3 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 6, 2015 at 10:58 am

musical,

Without getting into the meanings of noise for different people, what noise monitors can do is provide data about changes in noise levels.

When you have 1 loud flight waking up people at night, and that turns into 5 loud flights at night -if that monitor catches it, that is information. Combined with complaints, even more information.





9 people like this
Posted by CrescentParkAnon.
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jun 6, 2015 at 11:25 am

>> Or 521 complaints per individual address per day!

Try a sanity check on your statements, PC. Perhaps you might catch that there is no one that would make over 500 calls per day about airplane noise.

Again, you are trying absurdly to make it look like anyone complaining about airplane noise is a lunatic. I resent that, and I don't like that over time the Palo Alto Online has allowed you to obstruct and obfuscate this issue simply because you are an outspoken pilot.

Your never-ending attempts, all like this, all transparent as all get out, to switch back and forth using anything to throw up flak against the real issue are against the people of this area. Over time people have come to realize there is too much airplane noise, and slowly but surely they see they might be able to do something about it and are deciding to do that. There is a lag, that is, it takes a while for reality to show up when it comes to people expressing themselves politically on issues like this. It took decades for people to decide to end smoking, and all the way there were the people like you who spoke against it for some mysterious reason taking a stand against people's health and comfort. Why?

All your years of work to attack people on this, and then claim you only are trying to help, is going to end up being in vain, and at some point the airlines will figure a solution, and the end result is that you would have helped to delay the right thing happening by some amount of time. Aren't you proud?


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 6, 2015 at 12:40 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

CPA states "Perhaps you might catch that there is no one that would make over 500 calls per day about airplane noise."

The article, which someone else posted, states ""46 percent of the total 408,468 complaints received in April came from 12 addresses, officials said."

Are you questioning this data or my calculations?

**********
CPA states "you are trying absurdly to make it look like anyone complaining about airplane noise is a lunatic."

As I have repeatedly stated :
in my decades of dealing with airplane noise complaints and my 5? years of experience with Town Forum discussions on airplane noise I have come to appreciate that:
1 - the majority of people who complain sincerely believe that they are being significantly and personally impacted by airplane noise
2 -some of these people engage, like we all sometimes do, in both hyperbole and exaggeration in order to emphasize and justify their complaints
3 - the only way to have a fact based discussion is to encourage people to provide date, time, place information which can then be used to independently assess what actually happened.
4 - no amount of data can deny how a person feels but the documented facts can be used to stimulate timely discussion and decisions regarding what public policy changes are appropriate.

So where exactly is my statement that " anyone complaining about airplane noise is a lunatic."?

*****
CPA states "I don't like that over time the Palo Alto Online has allowed you to obstruct and obfuscate this issue simply because you are an outspoken pilot."

This Forum is meant to be " a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion." Why do you feel 1) free to continue to attack me personally and 2) that your views should be preserved and cherished on this Forum but that the views of people who disagree with you should be banished?

Please just address the opinions and the facts I present and leave the personal attacks for the playground.


2 people like this
Posted by Asher Waldfogel
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Jun 6, 2015 at 2:48 pm

Asher Waldfogel is a registered user.

Since we’re talking about noise - construction equipment in residential neighborhoods is allowed to produce 110 dBA continuously for as much as ten hours per day. That’s well in excess of OSHA unprotected industrial exposure limits. Non construction tools and equipment are allowed to produce 95 dBA 7 days per week.

110 dB is a modern jet on takeoff at 200 feet.

Reference: PAMC 9.10.060(c) and 9.10.060(e)


Like this comment
Posted by I agree
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 6, 2015 at 3:06 pm

Asher,

You need a permit for construction and there are curfews.

Constructions permits and curfews rely on some common sense which is apparently not what we can expect from airplane noise.

Planes are operating at night.


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 6, 2015 at 3:26 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Here are some of the many sound levels that require no permits and that do not have any curfews:
Garbage disposal, dishwasher, average factory, freight train (at 15 meters) (89 dB);
propeller plane flyover at 1000 ft (88 dB);
diesel truck 40 mph at 50 ft (84 dB);
diesel train at 45 mph at 100 ft (83 dB).
Food blender (88 dB);
milling machine (85 dB);
Passenger car at 65 mph at 25 ft (77 dB);
freeway at 50 ft from pavement edge 10 a.m. (76 dB).
Living room music (76 dB);
radio or TV-audio, vacuum cleaner (70 dB).

Web Link

I seriously doubt that any non-military aircraft flying at 4000 ft above Palo Alto would generate 70 dB at ground level.

However, there are people who are very sensitive to noise and who would find all of the above sound sources to be disconcerting and would therefore act to avoid these noises or to have them banned.


12 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 6, 2015 at 4:28 pm

Concerned residents in Portola Valley and Woodside banded together to hire a professional aviation noise consultant, and found a peak noise level of 80dB.

From The Almanac:

"Nguyen's group hired its own aviation-noise expert, who conducted tests and found that between Aug. 26, 2013, and Sept. 11, 2013, 61 arrival flights had a peak noise level of 80 decibels near Skyline Boulevard in Woodside, she said" (full article below)

I believe Musical and Skydoc have also have done some measurements, and found aircraft exceeding 70db in Palo Alto.

Residents, city officials gear up to fight increased airplane noise
The Almanac ~ October 29, 2014 Web Link


8 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 6, 2015 at 4:29 pm

Hello Peter,

My garbage disposal does not make money off of my sleep.

My food blender is also not a regularly scheduled event which is multiplied in a way that is out of my control.

And neither of them advertises to create even more noise.


5 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 6, 2015 at 5:03 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I agree - everything we know about human behavior supports the fact that we find things that we can control less irritating than things that we do not control.


3 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 6, 2015 at 5:51 pm

In this case it's not "things."

It's noise - measurable, traceable; you can also monitor it.

Noise is also controllable.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 6, 2015 at 8:13 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"In this case it's not "things.""

Noises are not different from things but are a particular subset of things.


8 people like this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 6, 2015 at 10:18 pm

I agree with Peter that "we find things that we can control less irritating than things that we do not control." Involvement without control is inferior to control - but I suspect this idea is the main reason that B&K suggest "community involvement" as an important "innovative tolerance-building initiative"

If my blender turned itself on for 30 - 45 seconds every few minutes during rush hour and perhaps 4-5 times per hour at other times, I would find it "highly annoying", particularly if I had no control over it.


5 people like this
Posted by You ain't heard nothing yet
a resident of another community
on Jun 6, 2015 at 11:24 pm

The major events in the world, country and region are now mostly about the interplay, and sometimes the clash, of special interests. If Palo Alto residents stand by and just imagine they matter, PA residents will get more noise, few lanes for traffic on El Camino, drones in their yards and higher taxes and fees to pay for corrupt bureaucracy at every level of government and the attendant sky-high public pensions and other benefits.


4 people like this
Posted by Thoughtful
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 7, 2015 at 9:35 pm

Thoughtful is a registered user.

I believe I hear deep distress from people expressing their painful experiences caused by the incessant aircraft noise.

Each person writing of this deserves respect and caring.

I am extremely noise sensitive and find the noise and pollution a torment.

Facts are the least helpful response. How about compassion?


Like this comment
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 7, 2015 at 10:26 pm

Skydoc,

Can you post a link to the source for B&K suggesting "community involvement" as an important "innovative tolerance-building initiative"?


2 people like this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 8, 2015 at 9:11 pm

Hi Jetman-

Here is the reference you requested:

Web Link

SFO Noise Abatement Office seems to be doing most of it now. The Roundtable violated it big time when they again refused Palo Alto's request for membership.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 8, 2015 at 9:21 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Hopefully people will actually read this document and not just accept the one-liner misrepresentation of what it proposes.

For example:
"To develop tolerance, airports will alter their stance with respect to “community liaison committees” from a traditional “inform” posture, where the airport would present (and often defend) its position, along a continuum, towards TRUE EMPOWERMENT ( emphasis added). Given the complex nature of airport operations and the range of opinions possible in any public engagement process, this outcome is by no means simple to achieve but, recognising that the objective is to provide the community with at least some control over environmental outcomes, sophisticated tolerance- building airports will strive to identify aspects of the operations that can be managed in conjunction with the community."


1 person likes this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 9, 2015 at 12:44 am

I don't see what all the fuss is about airplane noise. Sure, they fly over Palo Alto, but so what? We live in the City of Palo Alto, not the Remote Wilderness of Palo Alto. Yes, the planes do make some noise, especially when they fly over my residence. It is no big deal, though. Ditto with the trains. The neighbors' kids, who sound like genetically engineered crosses between a screech owl and a howler monkey, are lots worse than the commercial jets. Now there is constant noise I could do without. The 787s aren't that bad, really.


Like this comment
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 9, 2015 at 12:59 am

[Post removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 9, 2015 at 1:14 pm

@Kazu wrote:

"[Post removed.]"

You do that way too often, Palo Alto Online. Almost never to me, but quite frequently to certain others. Why don't you set up a proper forum with typical forum administration, guidlines and standards? Otherwise, your comments section will rapidly become like CNN's, and ultimately become just as non-viable.


7 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 9, 2015 at 1:49 pm

I agree that there is too much airplane noise.

WIndows open, woke up to the noise.

Airplane noise is Way above the train noise
Way above leaf blowers
Way above noisy neighbors
Way above 101 and 280
Way above any urban noise

To learn that airports work on the community to "develop tolerance" ?!!

THANK YOU SKY POSSE,

I signed the petition and hope that noise is taken seriously.

Web Link



3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 9, 2015 at 3:21 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Airplane noise is Way above the train noise
Way above leaf blowers"

The real world data do not support your perceptions:
freight train (at 15 meters) (89 dB);
propeller plane flyover at 1000 ft (88 dB);
diesel truck 40 mph at 50 ft (84 dB);
diesel train at 45 mph at 100 ft (83 dB).
Passenger car at 65 mph at 25 ft (77 dB);
freeway at 50 ft from pavement edge 10 a.m. (76 dB).
The average leaf blower at 50 feet (70-75 dB).

However, it is generally accepted that once an individual becomes irritated by a particular noise that they will be increasingly sensitive to that particular noise. Conversely once an individual accepts the existence of a particular noise then they are less aware of that noise.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 9, 2015 at 3:40 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Wikipedia:
"Hyperacusis (also spelled hyperacousis) is a health condition characterized by an over-sensitivity to certain frequency and volume ranges of sound (a collapsed tolerance to usual environmental sound). A person with severe hyperacusis has difficulty tolerating everyday sounds, some of which may seem unpleasantly or painfully loud to that person but not to others.[1][2]"

"Misophonia, literally "hatred of sound", is a rarely diagnosed neuropsychiatric disorder in which negative emotions (anger, flight, hatred, disgust) are triggered by specific sounds.[1] The sounds can be loud or soft.[2] The term was coined by American neuroscientists Pawel Jastreboff and Margaret Jastreboff[3] and is sometimes referred to as selective sound sensitivity syndrome.[4]"
**************
"The range of sound we can hear is phenomenal; some people can literally hear a pin drop and yet most can still tolerate loud sounds such as heavy machinery. Levels of loudness that cause discomfort differs from person to person and can also be affected by a person’s mood, for example we may be less tolerant of loud sounds if we are stressed."

"Sound sensitivity is a clinical enigma, as there is not a test which can diagnose it and as such it is frequently solely based on what the person describes.

Often the person does not have a universal dislike for all sounds but finds specific sounds uncomfortable. Typical examples are screaming children, mechanical noises and traffic noise; often it is the tone of the sound which is distressing rather than the volume of the sound."

Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by I agree
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 9, 2015 at 4:54 pm

[Post removed.]


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 9, 2015 at 5:07 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

[Post removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by I agree
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 9, 2015 at 5:36 pm

Except that the facts like decibels of a food blender are used in a very tricky way. Like to say they are just as bad as airplanes - nobody has to be made to hear hundreds of food blenders or garbage disposals operating at the same time.

You call noise a clinical enigma, yet you propose building "tolerance" The word tolerance itself is pretty bad when associated with noise (unwanted sound).

Sorry Peter, noise is unwanted, and I do think you need a white Lab coat to want to make people build tolerance for something as unwanted as airplane noise.


5 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 9, 2015 at 5:39 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"yet you propose building "tolerance"

I never have made that proposal.

Please stick to the facts and to my exact words as posted.


Like this comment
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 9, 2015 at 6:05 pm

Peter,

You shared this, from the airport innovative tolerance-building initiative

"To develop tolerance, airports will alter their stance with respect to "community liaison committees" from a traditional "inform" posture, where the airport would present (and often defend) its position, along a continuum, towards TRUE EMPOWERMENT ( emphasis added)."

I think you did the caps. It appeared like a suggestion on your part.

The airport book really sounds like it goes with a white coat.


7 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 9, 2015 at 7:33 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

[Post removed.]

And why did you not include the rest of my quote - because it would have proven the speciousness of your posting:

" Given the complex nature of airport operations and the range of opinions possible in any public engagement process, this outcome is by no means simple to achieve but, recognising that the objective is to provide the community with at least some control over environmental outcomes, sophisticated tolerance- building airports will strive to identify aspects of the operations that can be managed in conjunction with the community."


5 people like this
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 9, 2015 at 7:36 pm

I flew to the south land Friday from San Jose. I could see that the planes were in a reverse landing pattern until -/+ 12:00 and then switched back to the regular landing pattern. This is beginning to look like a regular pattern. The reverse landing pattern tends to skew the planes over the south PA/ MV area in the morning.

At a hotel I talked to two pilots who said they were fully aware of the noise complaints and were in meetings with the director at SFO. Their comment was that if everyone keeps on complaining then the airport will end up being in Livermore. No more SFO. Ha Ha - big threat. Keep complaining - it is being noticed.


2 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 9, 2015 at 8:11 pm

Livermore, now there's an idea. 52 minutes into downtown S.F. on BART, vs 25 minutes from SFO. Not bad. Perhaps faster if we can get HSR rerouted back to the Altamont option.


2 people like this
Posted by Too many planes
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 9, 2015 at 9:25 pm

This evening I went for a walk at seale park. There were 5 or more planes on their approach to SFO. It was between 7:45 to 8:00pm. Midtown now feels like an airport runway, how did this happen with no involvement or concern for those of us living and breathing beneath all these planes?


2 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 9, 2015 at 10:24 pm

The Big Sur Route over downtown North is horrible. I counted 9 planes over Johnson Park in 30 minutes. It's just too much, too loud, and too many hours of the day.


2 people like this
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 9, 2015 at 10:26 pm

Here's 14 flights that should have been within earshot over 45 minutes.

AAL218.... 5000ft... 737... 7:32pm
JBU633.... 5800ft... A320... 7:33
UAL508.... 5500ft... A320... 7:37
SWA4112.. 5000ft... 737... 7:39
EVA28..... 7000ft... 777... 7:40
SKW6252.. 5500ft... RJ.... 7:46
SKW6269.. 6000ft... E170.. 7:47
UAL927.... 6200ft... 777... 7:50
SKW5553.. 4700ft... E170.. 7:52
CAL004.... 5500ft... 747... 7:54
ASA386.... 5400ft... 737... 7:57
VRD941.... 4900ft.. A319.. 7:59
UAL1944.. 4300ft... 737... 8:13
SIA 2 ....... 4400ft... 777... 8:16

Most were above 5000 feet, and not concentrated on one path. In general, the lower ones crossed closer to Menlo, the higher ones closer to Mountain View. Yes there were 7 between 7:45 and 8:00pm. (WebTrak data)

Not that it matters, but I wonder how many of the passengers were Palo Alto residents, or employees or customers of Palo Alto companies. Or flying in for Stanford Commencement and staying in Palo Alto hotels.


Like this comment
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 9, 2015 at 11:04 pm

musical,

Compared to San Francisco and San Jose, you really think that Stanford Commencement is causing the noise?

If your point is that whoever generates travelers should get all the noise, then we should at least get some real numbers and not "wonder."


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 10, 2015 at 12:26 am

Ok, I'm wondering how to get those real numbers. Somewhere out there are unbiased estimates of the economic activity brought in by airline transportation. I did say, "not that it matters," but the point that I'd make is that if grandma is coming in on that flight, the family on the ground will be less likely to complain about the noise. (Merely an opinion; I don't have data.)


1 person likes this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 10, 2015 at 1:05 pm

I agree wrote:

"Airplane noise is Way above the train noise
Way above leaf blowers
Way above noisy neighbors
Way above 101 and 280
Way above any urban noise"

No, it's not. Noisy neighbors and leaf blowers are lots worse than the airplanes.

It never ceases to amaze me that people move near a flight path and then complain about noise from airplanes. Ditto with folks who move near the train tracks and complain about the noise from passing trains. If you don't like the noise, then simply move to someplace more quiet.


3 people like this
Posted by Whoosh Whirr Roar
a resident of Woodside
on Jun 10, 2015 at 4:22 pm

"It never ceases to amaze me that people move near a flight path and then complain about noise from airplanes."

Get the facts. In this case the flight paths moved near the NOMBYs (not over...).

I agree with your point. The FAA's new approach system is shaving one to three minutes off arrival times, airline on-time stats have been noticeably improved, so who are these people to complain about some minor occasional personal inconvenience?


2 people like this
Posted by Agenda
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 10, 2015 at 4:38 pm

[Post removed.]


3 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 10, 2015 at 5:11 pm


The 5000 altitude is BOGUS because flights way above 5000 feet can be loud.

What is much worst are the number of flights, 100, 200 per day? What's the plan 400, 500?

Not that you want one loud event to bust your hearing aide but I would rather take 2 -3 laf blower events per day than the continuous drone of the Whoosh Whir Roar


5 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 10, 2015 at 5:17 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Clearly some people are much more sensitive to and sensitized to airplane noise than is the vast majority of the local population.

Have they talked to their fellow citizens in East Palo Alto, eastern Menlo Park, Redwood City, Redwood Shores and Burlingame?

Folks, it is all relative and compared to any of these other communities the ground level airplane noise footprint in Palo Alto is significantly lower. And the protestors only remedy is to move their less noise airplane traffic over someone else's community.


4 people like this
Posted by Agenda
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 10, 2015 at 5:33 pm

"Not that you want one loud event to bust your hearing aide but I would rather take 2 -3 laf blower events per day than the continuous drone of the Whoosh Whir Roar"
Then it is fortunate that you live in Palo Alto, since we do not have the continuous drone of " whoosh whir roar".


"
The 5000 altitude is BOGUS because flights way above 5000 feet can be loud."
Initially people complained non stop that the flights were at 4000 feet or lower. Then when you show them that the flights were above 5000 feet. They claim that is bogus and say flights above 5000 ft can be loud.
Others have shown the relationship between noise and distance from the course. So I say much of these complaints are BOGUS


8 people like this
Posted by Resident 1-Adobe Meadows
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 10, 2015 at 9:25 pm

Resident 1-Adobe Meadows is a registered user.

Where is "Another Palo Alto Neighborhood"? I have this vision of someone living between Foothill and 280 in some niche location that is totally protected from noise and vision of the scene. And intentionally so.
Agenda - where do you live? You are oblivious to the whole activity on the valley floor.

Different topic - If you complain to SFO you will receive a return message that includes all types of data. There is someone out there on the receipt end of the complaints.


Like this comment
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 11, 2015 at 7:54 am

Resident 1 - Adobe Meadows - It is true that there are humans at the receipt end of the SFO noise complaints. They are very understanding. They will patiently tally the complaints and tell you that unfortunately, they can't do anything to remedy the situation. You can see their well-organized monthly reports here:

Web Link


5 people like this
Posted by six of one
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 11, 2015 at 8:32 am

If you goto the link that Skydoc provided and look at the data regarding complaints, you will find:

April 37 callers from Palo Alto 301 complaints
March 37 callers from Palo Alto 411 complaints
February 22 callers from Palo Alto 310 complaints

[Portion removed.]


3 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 11, 2015 at 2:21 pm

six of one?

June 2014 there were 3 callers from Palo Alto.

Going from 3 to 37 callers is significant plus add that the number of times the callers have been disturbed is also increasing.

Complaints are probably more about the number of flights, since occasionally being bothered does not cause people to take the trouble to complain.


2 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 2:25 pm

"Have they talked to their fellow citizens in East Palo Alto, eastern Menlo Park, Redwood City, Redwood Shores and Burlingame?"

Yes, and visited said places. Interesting you listed B'game, because the approach path there is over the bay; B'gamers can see the planes but rarely hear them.

Research your challenges before you make them.

Numbers are poor substitutes for narrative. Turbofans don't feather and vortices do shed. Both make sound but neither can read numbers.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 3:05 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" Interesting you listed B'game, because the approach path there is over the bay;"

But the slant distance to homes in eastern Burlingame is much less than the 4000+ ft over Palo Alto and sound radiates in ALL directions not just down.

Check your physics before you make incorrect assumptions.


3 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 11, 2015 at 3:48 pm

NPR station KAZU ran a piece on the impacts of NextGen on people in the Santa Cruz Mountains this morning at 7:45am, and again at 8:45am. A podcast of the program can be found at the link below.

"Congressman Farr: FAA Will Hear Residents' Concerns Over New Flight Path"
KAZU ~ June 11, 2015 Web Link


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 3:51 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Here is the SFO Noise Exposure Map:

Web Link

Note how close eastern Burlingame residences are to the flight paths and the CNEL 65 dB area.

Note that Palo Alto is literally many miles away.


3 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:04 pm

"Note that Palo Alto is literally many miles away."

Miles away from what? From those SFO bound planes flying right overhead at 5 kft?

Look, you cannot have it both ways; you need to compile your sundry tales into a whole with a modicum of coherence.

If you got it right, tho, it's apparent and scary that SFO doesn't know where its traffic actually is.


Like this comment
Posted by Engineer
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:15 pm

The real problem is notnoise, but errant amateur pilots in private planes. They have a track record

Web Link

and

Web Link

and

Web Link

and

Web Link

Close PA Airport for safety sake before it's too late.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:24 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Cur - Palo Alto is literally many miles away horizontally from SFO and almost all inbound SFO aircraft that fly over Palo Alto do so at or above 4000 ft..

Noise increases as the inverse square of the distance from the source to the ground. So sound on the ground from an airplane at 1000 ft is 16 times as loud as the sound on the ground from an airplane at 4000 ft..

Look at Exhibit C-1 if you want to see who is really impacted by inbound SFO traffic:

Web Link

What is not clear about these simple facts?


2 people like this
Posted by Engineer
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:36 pm

"Note how close eastern Burlingame residences are to the flight paths and the CNEL 65 dB area."

Let's see what this might mean. From Web Link

"CNEL is the acronym for Community Noise Equivalent Level. CNEL is a single number result that is calculated for a complete 24-hour period and usually made up of results taken at shorter intervals such as 5 minutes or 1 hour and then averaged over the whole 24 hours."

This description is a mite murky, but it seems the averaging they do over the (much longer) quiet intervals will lower the result by many dB. It is therefore highly unrepresentative of the noise and annoyance level during any particular flyover.

Figures can lie if they're properly coached.

As you say, the map has no relevance tp Palo Alto anyway.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:47 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Engine - as usual you did not provide the full definition of CNEL:

"COMMUNITY NOISE EQUIVALENT LEVEL (CNEL)
A noise measurement system introduced in the early 1970's by the State of California as a simplified alternative to the NEF system (see NOISE EXPOSURE FORECAST) for community noise exposure, with particular emphasis on airport noise. The major difference is that CNEL can be measured using ordinary dBA readings (see SOUND LEVEL METER), as opposed to the computer calculation of EFFECTIVE PERCEIVED NOISE LEVEL used in the NEF.

As well, the CNEL system gives a higher weighting to evening flights (1900 to 2200) and includes a table of corrections (see below) based on seasonal, residential type, previous community noise experience and pure tone/impulse differences. In practice, CNEL values are comparable to NEF and exceed them by 35 ± 2 dB. The total noise exposure per day (CNEL) is calculated from the equation:

CNEL = SENEL + 10 log10 (ND + 3NE + 10NN) - 49.4 (dB)
where ND, NE and NN are the number of flights during the day (0700 to 1900), evening (1900 to 2200) and night (2200 to 0700) respectively, and SENEL is the energy mean value of the single event noise exposure level which may be calculated from the equation:

SENEL = NLmax+10 log10tea (dB)
where NLmax is the maximum noise level in dBA and tea, is the effective time duration (in seconds) of the noise level (on the A scale) and is approximately equal to one-half of the duration during which the noise level is within 10 dB of the maximum."
********************
In particular you carefully omitted the much higher weighting given to evening (3X) and night flight (10X). Why did you omit those facts?


5 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:50 pm

"Noise increases as the inverse square of the distance from the source to the ground. So sound on the ground from an airplane at 1000 ft is 16 times as loud as the sound on the ground from an airplane at 4000 ft.."

Doubly wrong. The correct statement is: Noise varies inversely as the square of the slant range from the source to the observer. The slant range is the square root of the sum of the altitude squared and the ground distance from the sub-aircraft point to the observer squared.

That's why you can hear a 747 passing directly over your house, but not the 747 simultaneously flying at the same altitude over Chicago.


2 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:53 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I stated ""Noise increases as the inverse square of the distance from the source to the ground. "

Cur states "Noise varies inversely as the square of the slant range from the source to the observer."

For once we agree but Cur tries to make it "sound" otherwise.


12 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 11, 2015 at 4:54 pm

The airports don't make noise... aircraft do.

Nobody really cares where the airport is, they care where the planes are. 180-200 SFO bound aircraft fly over Palo Alto at 4,000-6,000' every day, and each one of those planes spends anywhere from 3-6 minutes in Palo Alto airspace. Let's do a little math here... how many man-hours of aircraft noise does Palo Alto suffer every day? What is the cost in lost productivity, real-estate values, and health effects from all of this noise, and pollution?

One day of flight tracks over Palo Alto (SFO bound craft in red): Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:02 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

" each one of those planes spends anywhere from 3-6 minutes in Palo Alto airspace."

These planes are flying 200 mph when over Palo Alto so in 3-6 min would travel 10 - 20 miles so where exactly is there a ten to 20 mile flight path "in Palo Alto airspace"?


13 people like this
Posted by Engineer
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:03 pm

Thanks for the formulas. Yep. Thought so. CNEL very effectively buries the perceived noise effects.

Cute algotithm, though. It could impress a lot of people.

Graffiti at the Stanford Computer center apropos this kind of "research":

"Neglect anything difficult to quantify, then build an imposing mathematical structure around the remaining data."


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:10 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Eng - please answer the question - In particular you carefully omitted the much higher weighting given to evening (3X) and night flight (10X). Why did you omit those facts?


8 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:13 pm

Ask any pilot. The distance from the aircraft to the ground is its altitude. That's what an altimeter measures. Slant range is what DME measures to a VORTAC antenna. They are not the same unless the aircraft is directly over the VORTAC. Now, visualize an annoyed citizen in place of the VORTAC and you got the picture.

You can call me Curm.

See ya. Dinner's on.


7 people like this
Posted by Engineer
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:20 pm

"In particular you carefully omitted the much higher weighting given to evening (3X) and night flight (10X). Why did you omit those facts?"

I didn't omit them. They're right there in your posting. They contribute greatly to the imposingness of that mathematical structure. If they're missing from your screen, try restarting your browser.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:24 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Curm - as I stated distance is "the distance from the source to the ground. "

Altitude is only one type of distance and that is horizontal distance above the terrain.

Slant range is another type of distance and it may or may not have anything to do with altitude.

My slant range from another airplane when I am flying has nothing to do with my altitude.

A plane flying over Palo Alto at 4000 ft is never closer to any point on the ground than 4000 ft.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:26 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"In particular you carefully omitted the much higher weighting given to evening (3X) and night flight (10X). Why did you omit those facts?"

I didn't omit them.

Interesting here is exactly what YOU posted:
""CNEL is the acronym for Community Noise Equivalent Level. CNEL is a single number result that is calculated for a complete 24-hour period and usually made up of results taken at shorter intervals such as 5 minutes or 1 hour and then averaged over the whole 24 hours."

So why did YOU omit the evening and nighttime weighting factors? Just explain your reasons for the clear omission.


7 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:38 pm

Peter,

"A plane flying over Palo Alto at 4000 ft is never closer to any point on the ground than 4000 ft."

Not correct... if the ground is at 100' above sea level the plane is 3,900' above ground level (AGL). This is not a trivial consideration for people living in the Santa Cruz Mountains, or the higher elevations in Woodside, etc.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:46 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Jetman - Santa Cruz Mountains and Palo Alto are at very different elevations. The official Palo Alto elevation is 56 feet (17 m) above sea level.

So my corrected statement would be that a plane flying over Palo Alto at 4000ft would not be closer to the ground than 3960 ft..

the interesting thing is that curm, jet and eng are now just quibbling and no one has yet to show that the ground level airplane noise over Palo Alto is worse than other communities that are closer to SFO. So what is the problem beyond the fact that a small number of people in Palo Alto ARE very sensitive to and sensitized to airplane noise?


8 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:49 pm

CNEL or any formula should be illegal.

We don't hear formulas, we hear the noise and are mostly bothered by the amount of times we have to hear the noise.

And what about the cumulative effects of enduring even "the formula" levels over a period of time. Is there a formula for that too? Clearly having to live with persistent noise is different than having it occasionally.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:50 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Correction:

"Altitude is only one type of distance and that is horizontal distance above the terrain."
should have been stated as :

Altitude is only one type of distance and that is vertical distance above the terrain.


6 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 11, 2015 at 5:52 pm

Peter Carpenter,

Is there a formula for discounting the number of people too?

Please do tell what the formula is to discount a "small" number of people enduring noise.


6 people like this
Posted by Another correction
a resident of Stanford
on Jun 11, 2015 at 7:37 pm

CNEL is not based on noise, but is based on simulated noise. Yes, it accounts for time in the sky. But it does not account for all the other factors involved in noise generation, such as extra noise involved in turns or altitude changes or poorly maintained engines. All are in play big time in the flights over Palo Alto.

And there have been no measurements of noise on the ground in Palo Alto used to calibrate this simulation, ever.

Even though the model used was created right here in Mountain View!


12 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 11, 2015 at 8:13 pm

The FAA's noise model also does not model the peculiar temperature inversion layer we frequently have hanging over this part of the Peninsula.

Anybody remember the problems we had with noise from Shoreline Theater a few years back? The low base notes from Shoreline would sound like they were coming from a party two block away... you would walk two block toward the sound, and you wouldn't hear a thing.


12 people like this
Posted by what noise
a resident of Menlo Park
on Jun 11, 2015 at 8:34 pm

So I have been reading these posts for a while now and am continually amazed by the combination of misinformation/conspiracy theory. My question for those complaining is what is the solution here? Should we close SFO? How about San Carlos or Palo Alto. Should we not allow flights over Palo Alto/Menlo Park/Atherton/Woodside/Portola Valley? Perhaps we should have landing traffic transition these areas at 10,000 feet and they can do a rapid decent into SFO starting mid span of the San Mateo Bridge. Should we move SFO airport away from population centers? Should we impose strict limits on flights into and out of the Bay Area?

All of these suggestions are complete nonsense. We live in the most dynamic economy in the world. The Bay Area population is GROWING due to fabulous educational and career opportunities. That's why all of you who bought homes in 1972 for $40,000 are MILLIONAIRES. You have artificially low property taxes because you voted in Prop 13 so you never have to sell because your taxes are permanently fixed at an absurdly low rate.

[Portion removed.]


4 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 11, 2015 at 10:48 pm

"Curm - as I stated distance is "the distance from the source to the ground.

Altitude is only one type of distance and that is horizontal distance above the terrain.

Slant range is another type of distance and it may or may not have anything to do with altitude.

My slant range from another airplane when I am flying has nothing to do with my altitude."

Gaaad. Are you serious? How did you ever pass your FAA written exam? Keep that altimeter at 2000 ft or more, and for God's sake stay away from mountains!


3 people like this
Posted by Nieghbor
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 11, 2015 at 10:52 pm

[Post removed.]


7 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 11, 2015 at 11:48 pm

Those who don't have a problem with airplane noise, should have no say. The only the people who matter on this issue are the people complaining.

If noise is being measured with a nonsensical formula, and not even measured, then that alone deserves some answers.


8 people like this
Posted by what noise
a resident of Menlo Park
on Jun 12, 2015 at 9:14 am

To "I agree there is too much noise" Great logic on your part. The only people that matter are the ones complaining. I love it! Good for you!Everyone else just butt out


11 people like this
Posted by Pangloss
a resident of Professorville
on Jun 12, 2015 at 10:48 am

Stop complaining. The numbers say there's no problem.


1 person likes this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 12, 2015 at 10:59 am

Palo Alto Online's "terms of use": Web Link


4 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 12, 2015 at 11:07 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Is there a formula for discounting the number of people too?"

I never suggested that the small number of Palo Alto resident who are sensitive to and sensitized to airplane noise should be discounted or that their perceived problem is not real.
What I dispute is the proposed solution to their problem of simply giving that airplane noise to some other community and probably to a community that is is less vocal, less influential and less affluent.

In my opinion, given the density and complexity of the Bay area airspace, there are no alternative routings of air traffic into SFO that will put some or all of the SFO inbound traffic that currently flies over Palo Alto over some magical place where there are no other people who will be similarly impacted.

And in my opinion it is neither ethically or politically acceptable to solve the problem of some Palo Alto residents by simply gifting that problem to another community.


6 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 12, 2015 at 11:28 am

Of course there are some people that don't have a problem with the constant high pitched whining over their homes and that's because you are far enough away from the NextGen path that you are not bothered. Atherton and Menlo Park residents don't have a problem with airplane noise and don't have many tallied SFO complaints. For those that are affected here in Palo Alto, there should be no feelings of backlash here on this forum. What's the point of debate on who hears it and who doesn't? If you hear it, then join in the conversation and see if we can make a difference in our community. If you don't hear it then maybe it's time to move along because I'm not sure your comments are adding positive value, but rather provoking arguments and minimizing the feelings of those affected.


6 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 12, 2015 at 11:37 am

Thank you Peter for being honest and revealing your purpose of debate. I hope you can have some compassion for others who are experiencing the barrage of noise. It would be great if all communities can band together to mitigate airplane noise. We don't need to pit one community against another. From what I'm reading this is a global problem.


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 12, 2015 at 11:49 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"If you don't hear it then maybe it's time to move along because I'm not sure your comments are adding positive value, but rather provoking arguments and minimizing the feelings of those affected."

A conversation with only those who agree with you is neither productive or the stated purpose of this Forum " a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion."

"Atherton and Menlo Park residents don't have a problem with airplane noise "

Wrong - the MENLO intersection is located IN Menlo Park and every plane that flies over that intersection has first flown over Palo Alto at a higher altitude. And there is a "new" problem of Surf Air flights into San Carlos which flies roughly over Middlefield between Ravenswood and Marsh.

I am directly impacted by these Surf Air flights into San Carlos and have, from day one, opposed the solution of simply moving their flight path away from my home and putting that flight path over homes in eastern Menlo Park.


13 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 12, 2015 at 12:45 pm

Peter,

None of Surfair's standard routes, or any of the commercial air-routes into SFO fly directly over your address in Atherton. The only commercial aircraft you have flying directly over your home are the occasional commercial aircraft that is vectored off its standard route by air traffic control, or the even rarer aircraft that strays off course.

There is no comparison between what you are experiencing, and and what people who live directly under the nominal commercial air-routes are experiencing.


SFBA Metroplex approach and departure plan Illustrated: Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 12, 2015 at 12:59 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"
None of Surfair's standard routes, or any of the commercial air-routes into SFO fly directly over your address in Atherton."

Wrong - I can see and hear practically ever Surf Air flight.

And many SFO bound flights do go directly over my house:

Web Link

Web Link

And where exactly do you live?

"There is no comparison between what you are experiencing, and and what people who live directly under the nominal commercial air-routes are experiencing."

There is a comparison and your constant selection bias simply ignores comparisons:
"Selection bias refers to the selection of individuals, groups or data for analysis such that proper randomization is not achieved, thereby ensuring that the sample obtained is not representative of the population intended to be analyzed. It is sometimes referred to as the selection effect."


10 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 12, 2015 at 1:07 pm

I'm directly impacted by Surf Air too. Check out the route down Waverly Street. I have Surf Air and SFO to contend with. The Willows is one part of Menlo Park that is heavily impacted. Palo Alto has paths all over the place from the planes that loop over us coming from the North to the planes that fly the Big Sur route coming from the South. I have learned a lot from this thread and thank you to all who have given out great information so that I can become more knowledgable on this topic.


10 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 12, 2015 at 2:55 pm

From all sources of data (flight tracks with altitudes, noise complaint tallies, etc.), it is very clear that Atherton has much less of an SFO noise problem than Palo Alto does. This is why I find it so strange that Mr Carpenter spends so much time on Palo Alto Town Square threads disparaging Palo Alto residents who are trying to do something about the airplane noise problem in our town. Comparing us to towns such as Burlingame is non starter. We did not choose to live as close to SFO as people in Burlingame did.

When Mr Carpenter says that the noise cannot be and should not be shifted from Palo Alto to other locations, I am convinced that he is worried about the noise being shifted back to Atherton where is used to be before Atherton managed to have it shifted down to ... Palo Alto, in the mid- to late 1990s.

[Portion removed.]

Mr. Carpenter, we think there are other solutions, such as making the airplanes enter the bay farther down south, where they can be much higher over land. Also, reverting back to planes arriving from the north looping over the Bay instead of over land. There are options.

[Portion removed.]


5 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 12, 2015 at 3:52 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"From all sources of data (flight tracks with altitudes, noise complaint tallies, etc.), it is very clear that Atherton has much less of an SFO noise problem than Palo Alto does. "

That is not the issue - the issue is that a small number of Palo Alto resident who are sensitive to and sensitized to airplane noise suggest that the proposed solution to their problem of simply giving that airplane noise to some other community and probably to a community that is is less vocal, less influential and less affluent.

Shifting traffic from Palo Alto to the South conflicts with SJC traffic and shifting it to the North brings it over the Bay too high for the required glide slope to SFO. A lot of the traffic from the North already loops over the Bay before turning North to land. And much more traffic flies over places like Fremont East Palo Alto, eastern Menlo park, Redwood Shores, Foster City and Burlingame than Palo Alto and most of these are lower altitudes tag the traffic over Palo Alto.

Please deal with these facts rather than just saying move the traffic somewhere else.

I have consistently said that I do not support moving traffic over any community, including Atherton where many residents are complaining about Surf Air traffic, to another community - how many times do I have to repeat myself?


3 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 12, 2015 at 4:47 pm

Funny that, the thing about SFO and SJC traffic conflicting in San Jose only, it appears
.
It does not seem to be an issue when we have both SFO traffic AND reverse SJC traffic together at the same time above Palo Alto, as happens on a regular basis, when SJC in in reverse while SFO is not. No conflict in PA but conflict in San Jose?

How about all those inbound San Jose planes flying smack above ... SFO on their way down south? No conflict there either it seems.

I find it hard to accept all these contradictory statements and situations.


8 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 12, 2015 at 4:49 pm

"Interesting here is exactly what YOU posted:
""CNEL is the acronym for Community Noise Equivalent Level. CNEL is a single number result that is calculated for a complete 24-hour period and usually made up of results taken at shorter intervals such as 5 minutes or 1 hour and then averaged over the whole 24 hours." So why did YOU omit the evening and nighttime weighting factors? Just explain your reasons for the clear omission."

There's too much lipstick on that pig already.


7 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 12, 2015 at 4:57 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"It does not seem to be an issue when we have both SFO traffic AND reverse SJC traffic together at the same time above Palo Alto, as happens on a regular basis, when SJC in in reverse while SFO is not."

In previous years all the airports in the Bay area would be landing in the same direction and when the "Bay was turned around" then all of the airports changed their landing and takeoff patterns at the same time. The current practice does force SJC landing traffic to fly under SFO landing traffic over Palo Alto and creates much more ground noise than the SFO traffic.

I have repeatedly stated that this conjunction is a new technique that should be opposed - I have seen ZERO complaints to the FAA asking that it not be allowed. No one has raised this issue with the City Council. Perhaps allowing posters to vent on this Forum somehow relieves them of the responsibility of having to actually do something,


6 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 12, 2015 at 5:28 pm

My point was and remains that I do not believe in the conflicting paths argument when it comes to SFO bound flights being routed above the SJC area. It is that simple.


2 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 13, 2015 at 8:57 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

If inbound SFO flights are vectored further South before turning North for SFO those SFO flights will require that departing SJC flight stay lower - like 3000 ft over Palo Alto. Not a good trade off as departing flights are much noisier than arriving flights.


3 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 13, 2015 at 9:08 am

Peter Carpenter,

Why not have the flights vectored further North?

Wasn't there a beacon over Filoli for the international flights?

Rumor has it that the flights crossing over certain homes over Woodside were shifted away to Palo Alto.


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 13, 2015 at 11:27 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Peter Carpenter,

Why not have the flights vectored further North?


PLEASE read my answer already provided above.


Like this comment
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 13, 2015 at 12:09 pm

@ Peter Carpenter

Strange how none of this is an issue with inbound SFO and SJC flights flying directly above SFO. Conflicting flight paths are not the reason. We all know this. The reason more likely is that airlines are dead set against spending a few extra bucks on a slightly longer route that would reduce noise pollution on groundlings.

This is all about dollars. Nothing else.


4 people like this
Posted by Subject is noise not numbers
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 13, 2015 at 12:11 pm

The engineers like to argue about numbers and in the process the real subject gets lost. The noise is troubling to people along certain routes.
Doesn't matter whether the expert agrees.


6 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 13, 2015 at 12:30 pm

The dramatic increases in aircraft noise created by the FAA's poorly implemented "nextgen" air-routes, is not just a problem for Palo Alto... it's happening all over the country.

Now there is a petition on whitehouse.gov. The petition focuses the infrastructure that was built based on local land-use guidelines, that is now being destroyed by the noise and pollution from "nextgen" routes.

Signatures are coming in from all over the country... NY, CA, MA, AZ, NC.


"Petitioning the Whitehouse to end NextGenHell"
AIReform ~ June 13, 2015 Web Link


Like this comment
Posted by Propman
a resident of College Terrace
on Jun 13, 2015 at 12:32 pm

[Post removed.]


5 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 13, 2015 at 1:10 pm

Peter Carpenter,

You haven't answered the question of why not vector more flights North, except to suggest that there are flights going through there. Question is how much traffic is actually routed to SFO up North, compared to Palo Alto and further South.

If international arrivals used to go over Filoli, does that traffic still go over that area now?

Without some numbers, and some facts, your authoritative remarks are kind of pointless. Looking forward to some numbers.

Propman,

Just saying "no real airplane noise problems" is kind of empty without some numbers. The airports should have that information available to the public, haven't found it.

No aggregate numbers of the number of flights going over any area actually.

Much like the noise formulas - all obscure.


10 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 13, 2015 at 1:19 pm

There is plenty of evidence that SFO bound commercial jets that once used to cross the peninsula at the Atherton level were rerouted south, i.e. above Palo Alto, some time around the mid- to late nineties.

Strangely enough, if planes were to go back to their old route, over Atherton, thereby reducing the noise issue in Palo Alto, the flight path would be somewhat shortened and airlines would save a bit of fuel and money. That this is not done testifies to the clout of Atherton residents with deep pockets. Let us make no mistake about this, our whole system, including the political system, revolves around who has the right amount of money to distribute around in order to get what they want.


1 person likes this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 13, 2015 at 5:11 pm

My Take:

"Strangely enough, if planes were to go back to their old route, over Atherton, thereby reducing the noise issue in Palo Alto, the flight path would be somewhat shortened and airlines would save a bit of fuel and money. That this is not done testifies to the clout of Atherton residents with deep pockets."

I agree that this sees to be consistent with the facts. I wonder if it also explains the lack of responsiveness of certain elected officials to noise complaints from Palo Alto.....


4 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 2:10 pm

@Subject is noise not numbers wrote:

"The engineers like to argue about numbers and in the process the real subject gets lost. The noise is troubling to people along certain routes.
Doesn't matter whether the expert agrees."

Correction: The noise is troubling to a *tiny* percentage of people along certain routes. There is a plane flying overhead right now, and it is not at all noisy or bothersome. Automobile traffic makes more noise than the airplanes, yet people don't seem to be having a snit fit about that.
Doesn't matter whether or not the complaining one percent agrees. ;-)

@six of one wrote:

"If you goto the link that Skydoc provided and look at the data regarding complaints, you will find:

April 37 callers from Palo Alto 301 complaints
March 37 callers from Palo Alto 411 complaints
February 22 callers from Palo Alto 310 complaints"

OK, so then it is something like 0.001 percent. The other 99.999 percent of Palo Altans must be reasonably OK with the airplane noise. Thirty-seven is what percentage of the total downtown population? In fact, that link you referenced (Web Link) a miniscule number of people complaining like crazy. And 15 people in Portola Valley called 615 times to complain in April? Seriously? And 13 people called 988 times in Brisbane? OK, that is just off the charts crazy, and makes me wonder if some of the complainers don't have issues besides airplane noise. I don't mean that sarcastically. Just look at the numbers.

@Skydoc wrote:

"People vary a lot in their sensitivity to aircraft noise."

If so, then it appears that the airplane noise is at a level where virtually everyone is OK with it. Those who are so hypersensitive it is driving them nuts would do well to simply move to someplace that is hear-a-pin-drop quiet.


4 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 2:17 pm

@Luanne wrote:

"Of course there are some people that don't have a problem with the constant high pitched whining over their homes and that's because you are far enough away from the NextGen path that you are not bothered."

Unless there is more than one Downtown North neighborhood in Palo Alto, I live in the same part of town as you. There is nothing more than the occasional soft whoosh when the planes pass over, and certainly isn't a constant high pitched whining.


4 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 3:19 pm

Kazu,

As I commented before the CNEL formula should be illegal.

Complaint-based system should also be illegal when used (as you suggest) against people.

Those who have a problem with the increased noise from airplanes deserve better answers than your nonsense.

Interestingly KAZU has a report on a noise beating. Try telling these guys that they are "miniscule."

Web Link


Like this comment
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 3:30 pm

I agree there is too much airplane noise, in terms of numbers they are minuscule. And why should a complaint-based system be illegal when the numbers disprove a certain point of view? Now that really is nonsense. If you don't like the airplane noise, then move.


7 people like this
Posted by Already Moved
a resident of Stanford
on Jun 14, 2015 at 4:12 pm

Palo Alto is just about as far away from an airport as one can be on the peninsula, and that is the problem. Many cities closer to a major airport on the peninsula do not have nearly the noise impact from commercial planes that Palo Alto does,

Despite the two people from other cities who claim there is no problem, and the one or two who claim to live in Palo Alto and hear only gentle whispers as the commercial jets turn and decelerate at 3700-4100 feet directly over our homes, there is a real problem with the disproportionate impact from SFO on Palo Alto.

It was remarkably quiet when I moved here.


6 people like this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 14, 2015 at 4:40 pm

Kazu-

I think the number of complaints registered with SFO underestimates the magnitude of the problem. Many people who are irritated by the noise do not know they can complain or they feel it is futile so they dont complain.

I have lived in the same house for about 30 years and the noise was not this bad until recently. At first I enjoyed watching the flights come in from Europe and Asia, It was sort of romantic. Recently there are more flights and they are lower. I am definitely grumpier than I was then but not that much grumpier :-)

You do raise an interesting point about the number of people who are affected. You have probably read about NextGen. As you know, it is a GPS based system the FAA is instituting to guide flights in and out over precise paths. They say that the purpose is to increase safety and save fuel; these may both be true, but I believe the major justification is to increase the number of flights airports can accommodate. (There may be more nefarious reasons having to do with making space for drones or fewer air traffic controllers but these reasons are not discussed).

Rather than following somewhat dispersed paths, the flights follow exactly the same path. This means that fewer people are affected by noise: the FAA calls this "Net Noise Reduction". The FAA spins this as and advantage. If you are under one of these new 'noise grooves', things *will* become quite unpleasant.

As the cumulative (DNL/CNEL) noise exposure increases, the percentage of a population 'extremely annoyed" goes up in a predictable manner. The airport can sort of keep a lid on it using 'innovative noise tolerance building initiatives (like the illusion of control and community involvement), but these effects are soon overwhelmed by the noise.

Try concentrating on something when you have 70 dBA overflights every 3 minutes. This happens during rush hour when our neighborhood is getting hit.

There are solutions that would disburse the noise burden equitably or move most of it over the Bay, but the FAA has not yet expressed an interest in either of these solutions.


5 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 5:46 pm

"I think the number of complaints registered with SFO underestimates the magnitude of the problem. Many people who are irritated by the noise do not know they can complain or they feel it is futile so they dont complain."

Skydoc, what makes you think the number of complaints to SFO underestimates the magnitude of the issue? Until I read the posts here on Town Square, I have never heard one person in Palo Alto complain about airplane noise. Not a single one. I also notice that there are only a handful of folks here going nuts about the planes. Compare that to the total number of Palo Alto residents. It really is minuscule. It is easy to say any figures that do not support one's claims are inaccurate. Guesswork hardly proves that, however. In the absence of any facts or figures to the contrary, and having heard no complaints from fellow Palo Altans except here, I see no reason to doubt 2015 Airport Director's Report.

As for the airports trying to maximize traffic flow, that makes perfect sense. What else are they supposed to do? If people had to put up with fewer flights, there would be a great outcry from unhappy travelers.

This isn't any different than people moving near the train tracks and then whining about the noise from the trains. Really, folks? Really?? By the way, I have heard this complaint from both Palo Alto and Mountain View residents.

There is a lot more noise in Palo Alto than in times past, but most of that is due to automobile traffic during commute hours. that is especially true when every other driver feels the need to constantly honk. Yes boys and girls, we do live in a city. The amount of airplane noise, always relatively low, has not increased much over the last decade. In the end, it does not really matter. People who are very noise sensitive don't belong in populated areas. They can remain here and be unhappy or move to someplace quiet. If they think that planes, trains and automobiles are going away any time soon, they are greatly mistaken. The debate here on Palo Alto Online is irrelevant.


2 people like this
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 14, 2015 at 5:52 pm

Kazu - you are making absolute statements about what other people are doing. I have complained to both SFO and SJC - and they respond. People need to speak for themselves here and not make statement about other people.


Like this comment
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 6:02 pm

Kazu,

Airports "maximizing" traffic flow disregarding and minimizing noise over residential neighborhoods is not good.

Is that airport policy, to do whatever it takes to maximize traffic flow? And if you don't like the hit on your house, to move?

Town Square mouthpieces to make this sound like "perfect sense" does not make it so. I agree with whoever called this lipstick but it's actually worse than lipstick, it's almost sinister.












Like this comment
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 6:11 pm

Meaning minimizing the noise PROBLEMS, since airports do not actually minimize the noise.

Airports make the noise, and apparently do not need or have to care about it.


4 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 6:32 pm

"Kazu - you are making absolute statements about what other people are doing. I have complained to both SFO and SJC - and they respond. People need to speak for themselves here and not make statement about other people."

Why, resident 1? Because it counters your point? I have lived here for over 50 years, and have never heard *anyone* complain about airplane noise. That is a fact. If you do not like it, too bad.

@I agree there is too much airplane noise wrote:

"Airports "maximizing" traffic flow disregarding and minimizing noise over residential neighborhoods is not good."

I agree, but if they can maximize traffic flow and minimize noise - which is what they have done - then that is good.

The only place I see complaints about airplane noise is here on Town Square, so it stands to reason that it is just a few wheels squeaking loudly. That does not mean they will get oiled, though, or that they will stop squeaking loudly.

"Town Square mouthpieces to make this sound like "perfect sense" does not make it so."

You think I work for Embarcadero Media / Town Square? Sorry to disappoint, but I don't. I'm sure they love seeing Palo Altans come here to do battle, though. It certainly seems to be encouraged. Bad for communities in Palo Alto, but good for online ad revenue.


8 people like this
Posted by Skydoc
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 14, 2015 at 6:40 pm

Kazu

Of course there is no way to know the exact number of people who are 'extremely annoyed'. I believe 1400 signed the Skyposse petition. This is not minuscule although it represents only 2-3% of the Palo Alto population. As SFO pumps more flights over our city, the cumulative CNEL/DNL noise will rise and more people will be 'extremely annoyed'. It may even get loud enough that it will bother you!

The 'move near the train tracks then complain about the trains' analogy does not really apply. The number of flights over Palo Alto has increased and the altitude has decreased in the past few years. When I moved here, it wasnt like this. If they say 'nothing has changed' they are lying.

The noise pollution CAN be fixed and it should be fixed. The FAA's mission now involves safety and efficiency. When environmental responsibility becomes co-equal with these two, we may see more respect for communities.


Like this comment
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 8:15 pm

Kazu,

"if they can maximize traffic flow and minimize noise - which is what they have done - "

Can you elaborate on how they have "minimized noise"?


4 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 8:48 pm

@I agree there is too much airplane noise wrote:

"Can you elaborate on how they have "minimized noise"?"

The Fly Quiet program for one thing. It has been around for 15 years, with the following stated goals:

The overall goal of the Fly Quiet Program is to influence airlines to operate as quietly as possible in the San Francisco Bay Area. A successful Fly Quiet Program is expected to reduce both single event and total noise levels around the airport.

@Skydoc wrote:

"Of course there is no way to know the exact number of people who are 'extremely annoyed'."

Then upon what do you base your claims? Upon the 97-98% of people who did not sign the Skyposse petition?

"I believe 1400 signed the Skyposse petition. This is not minuscule although it represents only 2-3% of the Palo Alto population."

You have just proved my point. I call 2-3% minuscule indeed.

"The noise pollution CAN be fixed and it should be fixed."

And obviously has been fixed. Otherwise, a lot more than 3% would have signed the petition.

"When I moved here, it wasnt like this. If they say 'nothing has changed' they are lying."

I don't know how long you have been here, but I have been here since the early 1960s. Planes in general are a lot quieter now than decades ago. The noise level from planes has not changed downtown for at least 10 years. Maybe the perceived changes are all in some people's imaginations? It has always been pretty quiet, and remains so to this day. The noisiest things here are screeching children and honking motorists, along with the occasional rumbling thump-thump-thump of a subwoofer equipped car.

Perhaps earplugs or noise cancelling headphones would do the trick? Just a thought.

The likely truth of the matter is that people complaining about the noise will never be happy here and airplanes aren't going away.


1 person likes this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 9:05 pm

For those gentle readers who are interested, Rolls-Royce describes noise reduction at Web Link. Other jet engine manufacturers also design noise reduction features into their products. The result is aircraft that are much quieter then those in times past. Bearing in mind, of course, than one should not confuse facts with The Truth.


2 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 9:09 pm

Kazu,

"A successful Fly Quiet Program is expected to reduce both single event and total noise levels around the airport."

It says "around the airport"

What about Palo Alto - is the successful "Fly Quiet" program also for Palo Alto?


1 person likes this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 9:18 pm

The truth about "quiet planes" from jet executive Alan H. Epstein

worth repeating...

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train"

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train..."

Web Link

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train. There was a joint study by MIT [Massachusetts Institute of Technology] and Cambridge University on virtually silent airplanes and that indicated that it might be feasible to consider building an airplane that was below the noise level of the urban environment. The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane."

Also is worth repeating

"The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane"

"The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane"

Engines are quiet, airplanes are not quiet.

Engines are quiet - the airplane is NOT quiet.


1 person likes this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 9:26 pm

Of course not all airplane engines are Rolls-Royce or quiet.


4 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 14, 2015 at 9:48 pm

"Of course not all airplane engines are Rolls-Royce or quiet."

The point is that the engines, and the airplanes, have become increasingly quiet over time.

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train"

A high-speed train a long ways off. It's not like the jets are flying at tree top level.

Again, the numbers don't lie. Only a tiny fraction of Palo Alto residents signed the petition.

Have fun with your frequent flyer miles!


3 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 10:04 pm

Again, a complaint-based system should be illegal when used (as you suggest) against people.

Bottom line is that airplanes are loud, noisy, and they blow out a lot of chemicals in the air.

If airplane waste was so good for you, there wouldn't be so many interests in trying to give it all to Palo Alto.


3 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 14, 2015 at 10:12 pm

Also 1 airplane being "quieter" is irrelevant when you have hundreds of airplanes - together over residential neighborhoods, they are a hazard.

I'll be looking for the NO FLY Day organized by Web Link



9 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 14, 2015 at 10:47 pm

Kazu said: "Again, the numbers don't lie. Only a tiny fraction of Palo Alto residents signed the petition"

Of course numbers lie... in fact, in the modern world, it seems like lying is the main way numbers are used.

SFO's noise complaint system is completely unscientific (by design), so anyone (including you) who claims to be able to draw any conclusions from the noise complaint numbers is lying, or needs to take a refresher course in statistics.

It is reasonably to assume the 1,400 people that signed the petition so far, are against the increase in aircraft noise. Your attempts to characterize the remainder is just projection.


4 people like this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 15, 2015 at 9:00 am

[Post removed.]


11 people like this
Posted by Andrea Wolf
a resident of Midtown
on Jun 15, 2015 at 9:52 am

I live in Midtown and am very attuned to airplane noise. I hear maybe 6 planes per day for perhaps 10-15 seconds max. At now time does the noise reach the level that I cannot hear someone talking to me from the next room. Airplanes NEVER disturb my sleep.

However, there are many months of the year when Shoreline Amphitheater is quite disturbing to me. There have been evenings when I could recognize the band that is playing by just standing in my bedroom and listening. Shoreline offers very little benefit to me personally, but it is a benefit to the overall community, so I live with it. Clearly commercial aircraft serve this area in variety of ways. I believe that we all benefit from our close proximity to several airports. With this benefit comes a certain cost, but we have all chosen to live in a very populated area, isn't the airplane noise a minor aspect of the overall bargain we have made to live here? Speaking as someone whose family has been here since before the Oregon Expressway existed, the traffic on Oregon and the noise of the sirens on Oregon and 101 (Bloody Bayshore is what 101 used to be called), is much more disturbing than the occasional roar of an aircraft engine far far above me.


7 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 15, 2015 at 10:22 am

Kazu,

If you're the same poster proposing which on another thread you suggest Palo Alto needs to build Channning House high rise buildings in Old Palo Alto and Crescent Park, using the same argument that you speak for 97% of the population, sounds like you are playing politics and also gambling.

Keeping this to the original thread - airplane noise. You have produced 2 arguments so far.

An SFO "Fly Quiet" program which is not for Palo Alto but for the area "around the airport"

and quieter engines but not quieter airplanes. I'll repeat my earlier post

The truth about "quiet planes" from jet executive Alan H. Epstein

worth repeating...

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train"

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train..."

Web Link

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train. There was a joint study by MIT [Massachusetts Institute of Technology] and Cambridge University on virtually silent airplanes and that indicated that it might be feasible to consider building an airplane that was below the noise level of the urban environment. The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane."

Also worth repeating

"The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane"

"The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane"

Engines are quiet, airplanes are not quiet.

Engines are quiet - the airplane is NOT quiet.


Anyway....

the argument that 1% and 3% should be ignored is not good. and neither is gambling on things like saying there is no pollutions from airplanes.






5 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 15, 2015 at 10:38 am

TYPO correction

the argument that 1% and 3% should be ignored is not good. and neither is gambling on things like saying there is no pollution from airplanes.

When talking about pollution, don't forget that East Palo Alto is most exposed to the chemicals from our local airport, and there again gambling is not a good idea.


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 15, 2015 at 11:18 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Engines are quiet - the airplane is NOT quiet. "

Not true. I was a project officer for the ARPA program, Prize Crew, that developed the world first silent airplane. The biggest problem was not the structural airfoils but the tip noise from the propeller. We had to make over 50 different hand shaped propellers to find the one with the lowest tip noise. The plane, the Q 2, was silent within 50 ft, carried two people and flew very slow.

"Lockheed Missiles and Space Company located in Sunnyvale, California was contracted to produce two prototype aircraft. In 1966, the company built two QT-2 "Quiet Thrusters", using modified Schweizer SGS 2-32 gliders. The prototype QT-2s were then modified to the QT-2PC "PRIZE CREW" configuration. The QT-2PC had a silenced engine and a slow turning propeller for quiet operation."

Web Link


6 people like this
Posted by My take
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 15, 2015 at 12:23 pm

At least as relevant as the percentage of the Palo Alto population that signed the petition, is the number of complaints and complainants reported by the SFO noise abatement office, in Palo Alto vs. other local towns.

Here is the most recent SFO noise complaint report, for April 2015:

Web Link

You will see that, of all the Peninsula communities on the SFO arrival paths, Palo Alto has the most individual complainants (Atherton has none, Menlo Park has three). Of note, the Santa Cruz area communities have large numbers, due to the recent implementation of NextGen.

So, these complainants and complaints do confirm that the SFO arrival noise problem is acute in Palo Alto, much more so than in communities to the north of us.

It is time to do something about the aircraft noise in Palo Alto. SFO cannot claim there no longer is a noise issue simply because it has pushed it down to Santa Clara County (Palo Alto), out of San Mateo County.


5 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 15, 2015 at 2:31 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"these complainants and complaints do confirm that the SFO arrival noise problem is acute in Palo Alto,"

No, this just confirms that more noise complaints were submitted by Palo Alto residents, NOT that the SFO arrival noise problem is acute in Palo Alto. That is a big difference.

As Jetman states "SFO's noise complaint system is completely unscientific (by design), so anyone (including you) who claims to be able to draw any conclusions from the noise complaint numbers is lying, or needs to take a refresher course in statistics."


"At least as relevant as the percentage of the Palo Alto population that signed the petition,"
No one knows how many of the people who signed the petition were Palo Alto residents.


7 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 15, 2015 at 5:01 pm

"The biggest problem was not the structural airfoils but the tip noise from the propeller."

But you flew your quiet lil' baby clean, flaps up, right?

I long ago realized the major noise from descending airliners on approach was not the engines, which were plainly at or near idle, but airframe noise due to the vortices shed by extended flaps. Similar vortices are created by jet exhaust at thrust, hence most people conflate airframe noise with jet engine noise. 747s are by far the dirtiest in landing configuration.

Now then, take the TU-95 and its supersonic prop tips...


12 people like this
Posted by Luanne
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 15, 2015 at 5:07 pm

Two residents from the Willows in Menlo Park just signed the petition stating that the planes are more frequent and are flying lower. Residents under the flight path are noticing changes so it is not our imagination. It's the Big Sur Route which I live under, right before it goes over the Willows and then over EPA. I have seen many planes flying at 3,900 feet over my home and then by the time they get to the Menlo Intersection they can be as low as 3,400 feet. Life would be so much better if they reached the Menlo Intersection at 5,000 feet.


5 people like this
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 15, 2015 at 7:50 pm

Kazu, FAA,et all are making the argument that newer planes have quieter engines. That may be true but reality says that the newer planes are few and far between. The airlines may have orders in but what is in the air now is the older versions of the planes. And the American carriers are leasing out the older planes to the foreign airlines who are frequenting our skies.

The Fed-Ex MD's are noted as being especially old and noisy.
Side Notes -
1. The EPA want to regulate emissions from the Planes - Associated Press.
2. SJ and SF airports to add flights.


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 15, 2015 at 7:58 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

Here are the fleet age rankings from newest to oldest for the nation's 15 largest airlines:

Virgin America -- 5 years
Spirit Airlines (NASDAQ: SAVE ) -- 5.2 years
Republic Airways -- 5.5 years
JetBlue -- 7.4 years
Frontier Airlines -- 8.2 years
Alaska Air (NYSE: ALK ) -- 9.6 years
Hawaiian Airlines -- 10 years
AirTran -- 10.9 years
SkyWest -- 11 years
Southwest Airlines (NYSE: LUV ) -- 11.7 years
US Airways -- 12.1 years
American Airlines -- 13.6 years
United Airlines -- 13.6 years
Delta Air Lines -- 16.9 years
Allegiant Travel (NASDAQ: ALGT ) -- 22 years


5 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 15, 2015 at 8:41 pm

Peter Carpenter,

Now please report back on the Non-US airlines.

When the US airlines upgrade fleet, do they dispose or recycle? I have a feeling those old clunkers re-appear.

And what about Cargo?

Besides the airplane, there is the distance to the noise of course. The closer the plane the more you can hear it. NO matter how new the fleet is.

Virgin - the virgin at 5 years? NOISY

United 13.6 years airlines after Delta 16.9 years? I wouldn't brag about this.


5 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 15, 2015 at 9:07 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I agree.... - do you ever do any of your own homework?

Why should I "report back" to you?


5 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 15, 2015 at 10:14 pm

Peter Carpenter,

Because you like to throw out factoids to make something sound good for your arguments, and leave stuff out. This should be your homework.

Please report back with fleet age rankings for Non-US airlines which are making noise over here.


9 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 16, 2015 at 12:27 am

Wow, this is very interesting...

The link below points to a "handout" for a Stanford class; Aero-astro 241.

If you scroll down in the "handout" to the section entitled "Sources of Noise", you will find a rather shocking graph. The graph shows the sources of perceived jet aircraft noise for both approach, and take-off.

What is shocking is, contrary to what we have been told by the self-styled experts posting on this site, the graph shows:

1. Total perceived noise on approach is actually louder (by 5-6), than total perceived take-off noise.

2. Perceived airframe noise on approach, is slightly greater than TOTAL perceived take-off noise.

3. Perceived intake-fan noise on approach, is the single loudest source of perceived jet-aircraft noise, and perceived intake-fan noise alone is 2-3 dB louder that TOTAL perceived take-off noise.


Stanford Aero-Astro 241 - Noise: Web Link



Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 16, 2015 at 3:52 am

@ Jetman -- I've also seen approach data quieter than take-offs in the FAA noise tables, and it does seem to run counter to experience. But it's not clear that we are talking about comparable altitudes.

Definitions are given a couple sections further down:

"take-off noise is defined as the noise measured at a distance of 21,325 ft (6500 m) from the start of the take-off roll, directly under the airplane"

"approach noise is also measured under the airplane when it is at a distance of 6562 ft (2000 m) from the runway threshold"

So if a jet takes a mile to get off the runway, it could be 1500 feet up by another 3 miles, while an aircraft approaching on a 3-degree glideslope may be just 370 feet up at a mile and a quarter out. Scroll down to the bottom of your document and you'll see how these altitudes factor into the calculation.


Like this comment
Posted by musical
a resident of Palo Verde
on Jun 16, 2015 at 3:57 am

Correction, I've also seen approach data LOUDER than take-offs in the FAA noise tables.

(easy to mess up my edits at this hour)


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 16, 2015 at 7:50 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

I provided the age data on the US carriers so perhaps I agree can do his share and provide the age data on non-US carriers who fly into SFO.


3 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 16, 2015 at 10:26 am

No thank you Peter Carpenter,

You bring up incomplete factoids to tell half of the story. Should be your job to present complete factoids.

For example, just saying your 2 person plane project was "silent" does not make planes silent.

The truth about "quiet planes" from jet executive Alan H. Epstein

worth repeating...

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train"

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train..."

Web Link

"A modern airplane is now about the same noise level as a high-speed train. There was a joint study by MIT [Massachusetts Institute of Technology] and Cambridge University on virtually silent airplanes and that indicated that it might be feasible to consider building an airplane that was below the noise level of the urban environment. The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane."


1 person likes this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 16, 2015 at 10:38 am

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"indicated that it might be feasible to consider building an airplane that was below the noise level of the urban environment. The hard part was not the engines, it was the airplane."


Note it says "AN airplane" - I guess they forget to note that a truly silent airplane was built in 1967 (see above re Prize Crew) and the hard part was not the airframe or the engine but the propeller noise. I know because I was a project officer on this ARPA effort and i was an eye and ear witness. And I would note that modern electrically powered aircraft are also very quiet because 1) their engine is quiet and 2) like the QT-2 they use very efficient airframes patterned after gliders. The more efficient the airframe is aerodynamically the quieter it is because noise is lost energy.


5 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 16, 2015 at 11:36 am

Peter Carpenter,

"I guess they forget to note that a truly silent airplane was built in 1967"

You forgot to remind them.

A person with your experience and interest in aviation could have led on the promise of quieter planes that was used in 1990 to pass the Airport and Capacity Act (ANCA).

Did they use your quiet plane to make legislators believe the promises? Is that how the concept of making curfews illegal came about? Quieter planes?

This is what has not been forgotten. How to lobby Congress.

Look at how 8 industry groups have just killed a curfew request in Burbank. The industry groups remember everything except issues about noise. Even at night.

Web Link

Dismissing those pesky "patchwork" rules that could interfere with 24-7 Noisy business.

And Bill Shuster asking for MORE.

Web Link

Of course they forget about something like quieter planes, but are very handy with making Congress act on code words like "patchwork" - no regulation.

You can remind them, but they may be too busy Web Link


2 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 16, 2015 at 11:40 am

"The more efficient the airframe is aerodynamically the quieter it is because noise is lost energy."

True except for the last. Radiated sonic energy is a totally negligible component of energy loss in most systems. There are many considerations in designing a maximally efficient airframe, which differ with its intended use. An efficient airframe MIGHT lose less energy to shedding the vortices that in turn generate noise, but minimizing that noise per se is seldom a design consideration. You may have stumbled into the only project of that kind that ever existed in this country. Any idea if it was followed up by anyone?


Like this comment
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 16, 2015 at 12:06 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"You may have stumbled into the only project of that kind that ever existed in this country. Any idea if it was followed up by anyone?"

ARPA's role was and is (now known as DARPA) to do high risk demonstration projects and thus to encourage follow on development by others. In this case the Army did a follow up program -
"Following operational trials with the QT-2PC in Vietnam, a production aircraft, designated the YO-3A was ordered. This aircraft's design was also based on the Schweizer SGS 2-32 glider. Like the QT-2PC, the YO-3A has a large wingspan and a larger canopy area for observation. Two crew members (a pilot and an observer) are seated in tandem. The observer is located at the front of the cockpit. The YO-3 is an all-metal low-wing monoplane of semi-monocoque construction. The control surfaces of the YO-3 including the ailerons and rudder are fabric covered. The engine cover, canopy, engine exhaust shroud, wing-root fairings, and wheel-well fairings were constructed of fiberglass. The YO-3 has retractable tailwheel-type landing gear.[2]"


8 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 16, 2015 at 2:48 pm

Check. It got as far as a derivative variant that, per its Y designation, the military deemed pre-production experimental. No apparent record of the technology being applied to transports.

In any event, the YO-3 flew its quiet missions sans flaps. Airliners on landing approach always extend their flaps, which churns the air behind the wings and makes that whooshing noise. No airplane designer is ever going to compromise approach and landing performance (i.e., safety) for noise reduction.


Like this comment
Posted by resident 1
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Jun 16, 2015 at 3:17 pm

Unprofessional Opinion only - a plane that is in an approach for a landing makes more noise as the flaps are extended, lowering the altitude, wheels are coming down and engines are in a reduction mode - less efficient. If the flight line coming in is crowded then backing off to get in line-up. Plane is stressed as it decreases speed.

A plane that is taking off is accelerating altitude and in most efficient mode of operation for engine.
No comparison.


3 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:13 pm

Because airplanes are not going to be "quiet" on their descent to Palo Alto, those willing to "accept" SFO arrivals hilly nilly may want to consider the potential harm this does to quality of life -if not for themselves, but for the people who are more vulnerable, including children which the FAA does not consider in any of their policies or formulas - not their sleep, nothing.

See how Congress just killed a curfew request from Burbank because of outrageous legislation like ANCA. Oddly named, the Airport Noise and Capacity Act which basically gifts airlines and airports an unregulated industry.

Airplanes are not quiet, and airplanes on descent are not really manageable for noise.

Ignoring the number of people complaining and gambling should not be the best option.


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:24 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"Unprofessional Opinion only - a plane that is in an approach for a landing makes more noise as the flaps are extended, lowering the altitude, wheels are coming down and engines are in a reduction mode - less efficient. If the flight line coming in is crowded then backing off to get in line-up. Plane is stressed as it decreases speed.

A plane that is taking off is accelerating altitude and in most efficient mode of operation for engine.
No comparison."

Sorry to bother you with the facts but look at the SFO Noise Exposure Map:

Web Link

There is no difference in the extent of the noise footprints for approaches and for departures.

And the noise levels over Palo Alto are orders of magnitude less than the ones shown here.


Like this comment
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:29 pm

Peter Carpenter,

You cannot say that without noise data in Palo Alto.

When you actually have noise data for Palo Alto, then MAYBE then you can use the word "magnitude."

Stop with the half-baked factoids.


1 person likes this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:42 pm

@I agree there is too much airplane noise wrote:

"An SFO "Fly Quiet" program which is not for Palo Alto but for the area "around the airport""

It is for the Bay Area. The last time I checked, Palo Alto was still in the Bay Area.

"Because airplanes are not going to be "quiet" on their descent to Palo Alto, those willing to "accept" SFO arrivals hilly nilly may want to consider the potential harm this does to quality of life -if not for themselves, but for the people who are more vulnerable, including children which the FAA does not consider in any of their policies or formulas - not their sleep, nothing."

Trying to use children as an argument device seems rather disingenuous to me. If children were having their sleep disturbed, the would have been a hue and cry from outraged parents many moons ago. The Three Percent Club would be much larger if that were the case.

"Airplanes are not quiet, and airplanes on descent are not really manageable for noise."

Following that line of logic: Then there is no point trying to manage the noise, hence complaining about it makes no sense.

"Ignoring the number of people complaining and gambling should not be the best option."

Correct. Three percent at most are complaining. Ninety-seven percent are not. Do the math.


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:44 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"When you actually have noise data for Palo Alto, then MAYBE then you can use the word "magnitude.""

What we have are facts regarding the crossing altitudes above Palo Alto and the Laws of Physics which dictate that the ground sound level from airplanes at 4000 ft is 6% of the ground sound level of an airplane at 1000 ft.. That is, by the way, more than an order of magnitude.


Like this comment
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:45 pm

[Post removed.]


Like this comment
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 16, 2015 at 4:59 pm

@I agree there is too much airplane noise wrote:

"If you're the same poster proposing which on another thread you suggest Palo Alto needs to build Channning House high rise buildings in Old Palo Alto and Crescent Park, using the same argument that you speak for 97% of the population, sounds like you are playing politics and also gambling."

And just what does that have to do with airplanes?

You need to get your facts straight. I said that high rise housing like The Marc (Forest Tower), Laning Chateau, Channing House, etc. should be built downtown and along California Avenue, and NOT in Crescent Park or Old Palo Alto. It was another poster who said high-rises should be built in those places.


3 people like this
Posted by Gripes of Wrath
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 16, 2015 at 5:10 pm

[Post removed.]


2 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 16, 2015 at 5:11 pm

[Portion removed.]

Comparing absolute noise in the absence of figuring out what is excessive and bad noise for a community, as it increases over certain baselines is not good. Not to mention the difference of accepting living at an airport and not.
[Portion removed.]

Bad news for us, and good news for them is that nobody asks any further questions, and accepts the factoids. Even the people who live near the airports are not well served by this. They have "fly quiet" programs at those magnitudes of noise.


2 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 16, 2015 at 5:41 pm

Oops, sorry Kazu,

I mixed up your posts promoting high rise buildings like The Marc and Channing House along California Ave, with the poster who wanted to build high rises in Old Palo Alto and Crescent Park.

What does this have to do with airplanes?

Say that developers were in charge of Zoning for Palo Alto. And they could do anything they wanted, in the name of progress. And there were no boundaries. And you had no say.

I know, it would make life simple wouldn't it?


3 people like this
Posted by Peter Carpenter
a resident of Atherton
on Jun 16, 2015 at 5:53 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

"What does this have to do with airplanes?"

Nothing, except that it is a perfect example of posters fabricating information. It is an issue called source credibility.


4 people like this
Posted by I agree there is too much airplane noise
a resident of Addison School
on Jun 16, 2015 at 6:10 pm

Peter Carpenter,

Source credibility sounds like authoritative propaganda.

That kind of describes CNEL.

What Kazu was referring to is this post -

"on another thread you suggest Palo Alto needs to build Channning House high rise buildings in Old Palo Alto and Crescent Park, using the same argument that you speak for 97% of the population"

the point was that dismissing complaints because the majority say nothing is playing politics.

since Kazu asked, I added another way that airplanes are connected to development.

The main point is that it's all politics, and I agree propaganda. And money is the driver.


10 people like this
Posted by Jetman
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jun 16, 2015 at 6:15 pm

Just a reminder folks... Palo Alto Online has their "terms of use". If someone makes a condescending, or vexatious, comment it is better not to respond in kind.

This forum is pretty useful for sharing information. Resolving disagreements... not so much.

Palo Alto Onlines "term of use": Web Link


1 person likes this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 16, 2015 at 11:03 pm

@I agree there is too much airplane noise wrote:

"Source credibility sounds like authoritative propaganda."

So if a source of information is credible, it is propaganda and is therefore not credible? That makes no sense at all. What does it have to do with aircraft?

"Say that developers were in charge of Zoning for Palo Alto. And they could do anything they wanted, in the name of progress. And there were no boundaries. And you had no say."

That is hypothetical, and in fact not the case. Your point? And what does that statement have to do with aircraft? It appears to be nothing at all. Or has someone proposed putting a helipad on one the buildings downtown?

"I know, it would make life simple wouldn't it?"

How so?

"the point was that dismissing complaints because the majority say nothing is playing politics."

It is not playing politics at all, and that claim seems to be just mud-slinging to me. If you have a logical, rational counter-argument to the numbers presented earlier, please state it.

"since Kazu asked, I added another way that airplanes are connected to development."

You did nothing of the sort. Again, you have an argument based on reason and facts, please present it.


1 person likes this
Posted by Kazu
a resident of Downtown North
on Jun 16, 2015 at 11:26 pm

@Jetman wrote:

"Just a reminder folks... Palo Alto Online has their "terms of use". If someone makes a condescending, or vexatious, comment it is better not to respond in kind."

Your post has nothing whatsoever to do with airplanes, but I do think it merits a response in at least one thread.

The problem is that Palo Alto Online is censoring content that is not condescending or vexatious at all. Not so much with me, but a LOT with many other posters here. Such a moderation style only serves to ratchet up the acrimony level several notches. For some people, anything that differs their opinions is incredibly vexatious and makes them explode. C'est la vie.

"This forum is pretty useful for sharing information. Resolving disagreements... not so much."

I disagree. This comments section (it is not a proper forum) is set up to place scorpions in a jar. If the scorpions seem reticent, the comments section shakes the jar, and then censors them when they sting. It frequently censors them even when they don't sting. It might seem like a good idea, as it brings readers to the online site. That is beneficial for ad revenue, at least in theory. CNN did the same thing on their online site once upon a time.

What actually happened was that CNN's comments section blew up in their face, and became a lot like what Palo Alto Online has become. It wasn't long before people zipped past the main articles and went directly to the comments sections to do battle. Any ads were relatively ineffective because they were ignored, and advertisers likely did not appreciate being associated with unending flame wars. The CNN comments sections were almost universally discontinued, and I suspect Town Square will suffer the same fate for the same reasons. Enjoy it while it lasts.


16 people like this
Posted by Ears open
a resident of Professorville
on Jun 17, 2015 at 7:34 am

Oh My, I just started looking at this forum because my neighbor told me about it. Yes Yes Yes! there is far too much airplane noise but the main issue is the constant stream of airplanes flying over my house. I don't know how low they fly but it seems very low, much lower than before. Can this be safe? Airplanes of all sizes going in different directions


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

All your news. All in one place. Every day.

Su Hong 2.0? Former waiter reopens Chinese standby under new name in Palo Alto
By Elena Kadvany | 5 comments | 3,693 views

What is a "ton" of carbon dioxide anyway?
By Sherry Listgarten | 15 comments | 2,465 views

Living as Roommates? Not Having Much Sex?
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,360 views

Do city officials ever consider giving taxpayers a break?
By Diana Diamond | 18 comments | 1,298 views

Expert witness are more than experts. Plus my 7 fundamental impeachment questions
By Douglas Moran | 10 comments | 937 views

 

Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund

For the last 26 years, the Palo Alto Weekly Holiday Fund has given away more than $7 million to local nonprofits serving children and families. When you make a donation, every dollar is automatically doubled, and 100% of the funds go directly to local programs. It’s a great way to ensure your charitable donations are working at home.

DONATE HERE