Letter to the Editor: JFK Flight Pattern a Problem

A local discusses the problems he has with JFK's plane routes.

The following is a letter to the editor from Rockville Centre resident Craig Lombardo:

Patch Community,

I write this "Letter to the Editor" to begin an organized public forum addressing the noise and air pollution over our homes in Rockville Centre and other neighboring towns. During certain times of the day/night, JFK airport has airplanes flying over our community, without exaggeration, every two minutes. Sometimes this continues for an hour or so. The noise is consistently loud and irritating.

To rebut some responses I'm expecting to hear such as, "You should have known what you were moving into," know that when my wife and I purchased our home, this wasn't an issue yet. Had we known this, we would have moved elsewhere. Therefore, JFK and the FAA moved into our backyard -- not the other way around.

After research through the Internet, I found this is a result of a recent flight path change in October 2011. Rather than the planes flying south, they now loop east, then north over Nassau County, then west over Westchester. See article by NBC.

I have written complaints beginning with our local RVC Mayor Murray to as high as President Obama. I have written to groups such as the FAA, Port Authority and the EPA. Sadly, but expected, ALL of my letters were unanswered except for Senator Skelos' office and County Executive Mangano. Their response was urging me to report this to the congressional representatives (already done, with no response).

The noise pollution is only one of the problems. I am also concerned about the air pollution we and our children may be suffering from. Not only air pollution, but lavatory waste. See 1010 WINS column.

Through this column, I hope to collect ideas, share opinions, and offer any progress made toward a decent response from the FAA. In order to be heard, we need to collectively speak through a single voice.

Perhaps there already are public hearings? A lawsuit? An investigation? If anyone has information, please respond to this column.
Frank February 20, 2013 at 06:23 PM
I'd ask Sen Chuck Schumer why he voted yea for the FAA Reauthoriztion Act without any consideration for the Downstate constituency... And the nerve he has for setting up a dumb hotline.... If you didn't like the bill in the first place why did you vote it into law? you voluntarily shafted Downstate residents for what?
Matthew Hogan February 21, 2013 at 01:08 AM
@Craig Lombardo: Here's a message from Assemblyman Brian Curran - "Dear Craig, If you get an opportunity, please contact my Assembly Office at 516-561-8216 to discuss this matter. We do not have a record of receiving any complaint from you on this issue. Thank you, Brian Curran"
Billy Times February 21, 2013 at 01:35 AM
Bobby, BRAVO to you for being a good little sheep for all these years and giving the FAA exactly what they want...for people to shut up and deal with it. Youre a good pawn. If you read Craig's article, you see this was a RECENT flight path shift...Not one that was since the 60's. It has gotten worse. Maybe not for your neck of the woods, but for RVC and surrounding areas, it has. Did you read the links? Read them. This is a new issue. Maybe you and your flock should move to the pastures..
Craig Lombardo February 21, 2013 at 04:14 AM
Frank, I was waiting to hear from you! I didn't know these facts about Schumer. I did write to him. No response. Ill read into the FAA Reauthoriztion Act. Thanks!
Craig Lombardo February 21, 2013 at 04:19 AM
Matt, this is true. I actually missed Assemblyman Brian Curran. I will definitely contact his office. Thanks to both of you for communicating this. (PS as I write this...a plane is flying over my home. Quite loud as usual. 11:18 PM)
Craig Lombardo February 21, 2013 at 04:23 AM
Also Matt, is it possible to somehow have neighboring Patch communities shared in on this article? It would be great to reach out to more than just RVC residents. We need more Franks here...
Matthew Hogan February 21, 2013 at 05:39 AM
@Craig Lombardo: One step ahead of you. Your letter has also been published on Malverne-West Hempstead-Lynbrook Patch (http://patch.com/A-2dR9), Five Towns Patch (http://patch.com/A-2dRw) and Long Beach Patch (http://longbeach.patch.com/groups/house-and-home/p/letter-to-the-editor-jfk-flight-pattern-a-problem).
Craig Lombardo February 21, 2013 at 06:42 AM
Thanks Matt. Appreciate your help.
Just a thought February 21, 2013 at 08:40 AM
NIMBY ... Not in My Back Yard. It is my understanding that the flight plan change had to do with "sharing" the noise. As Bobby noted above, we in LB have planes overhead ... all of the time. Large metropolitan areas have big noisy things ... like big roads, noisy traffic, police/EMS sirens ... its all part of living. So if you have ever flown out of any airport ... it may be time to ... let this one go. We all seem to want convenience ... but don't want to have to put up with it when we are not using the convenience. And as far as pollution goes ... how bout we worry more about the single occupant SUVs humming around this island than the rather full airplane.
Sand Beach February 21, 2013 at 10:07 AM
Planes must land & takeoff into the wind. Blame Al Gore or move!
Point George February 21, 2013 at 12:22 PM
In Point Lookout I dealt with the landing patterns from JFK for years, up until 2001. Then they changed the predictable flight patterns to more random ones to make it tougher for a terrorist with a shoulder launched missile to take a plane down. The planes stay higher longer and use a steeper landing approach, good for me. People live next to elevated subway lines and learn to deal with it. Rockville Center is not an undeveloped area like days/decades past, it's one of the most developed areas of Nassau County. Craig if you don't like living in a noisy urban environment move now, it's only going to get worse.
Gaby Libbey February 21, 2013 at 02:25 PM
A group has existed for decades dealing with JFK aircraft noise. It is the Town and Village Aircraft Noise Abatement Council. Contact the Town of Hempstead or your Village for more info. I used to serve on this Council in the 80s.
Fiona Baily February 21, 2013 at 03:22 PM
Dear Craig, I agree higher levels of noise are annoying and sometimes a nuisance. I especial do not like hearing the neighborhood gardeners at 8:00 AM except for Sunday and the 2 to 3 times a week noise from the RVC Sanitation men. Over the last 30 years I have come to realize these tasks need to be preformed and the annoying noises are a small price to pay for a lovely and clean RVC. These are our noises. Airplane travel like these services are unavoidable noises for useful and necessary services. Your solution and I'm not trying to be insulting, sounds like all the solutions in the land of Obama. Let's just kick the can down the road. The noise would be better for RVC if we changed the traffic to another community. I don't think that's very neighborly. It just moves the annoyance, it does not solve it. Air travel is easiest when planes use natural boundaries like rivers and coastline for easy access and fuel efficiencies. Because most destinations have these unobstructed boundaries there is less updraft or winds, so there is less drag on the airplane raising fuel economy. I live in RVC I see the Planes at various times during the day. I am often proud when they fly over head. I am not sorry for their noise and I believe these patterns will change over time when other government officials have a practical reason to change. The FAA has to look at all of NYS and not just our beautiful Village. Craig, I think its great you are so interested. Good Luck.
Jim Paymar February 21, 2013 at 04:04 PM
Craig, Please feel free to contact me as I am totally on board with you on this issue. The noise is unhealthful and in the summer you can't even enjoy being outside! Jim Paymar jim@paymarcommunications.com
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:21 PM
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:21 PM
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:22 PM
Craig Lombardo February 21, 2013 at 04:25 PM
Fiona, your suggestion is exactly what I'm thinking. Im not looking to kick the can to the next neighborhood. That would be hypocritical. We live on an island only miles from the ocean. I cant understand why departures cant take off over the ocean, where it doesnt disturb the residents.
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:29 PM
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:31 PM
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:32 PM
H.R. 658, the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012", was signed into law by President Obama on February 14th. A major problem with the legislation is that it includes language that exempts the new technology, collectively called the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen), from environmental review under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:33 PM
Go to this site. http://www.quietovergc.com/14820.html
Frank February 21, 2013 at 04:35 PM
Good luck to all... With the President's wet signature on the bill, you need an act of god to repeal it. Make sure everyone says thank you to Chuck Schumer for voting for this bill!!! http://www.schumer.senate.gov/
Noah Webster February 21, 2013 at 10:26 PM
The noise from airplanes is not nearly as annoying as the constant wail from the waambulance.
Billy Times February 22, 2013 at 01:14 AM
Noah, youre a moron. Off yourself...youre another sheep who will let the system overrun you and your family. Your ignorance and loyalty is best served in North Korea. Go move there.
Craig Lombardo February 22, 2013 at 05:17 AM
Frank, I think you should enter politics. The neighbors need a fighter like you. Thanks.
Craig Lombardo February 22, 2013 at 05:18 AM
Jim, most certainly will do. Thanks for the support.
Craig Lombardo February 22, 2013 at 05:20 AM
Matt, just spoke to Assemblyman Brian Curran's office. They are big advocates for fighting against this problem. Thanks for linking me to his office.
Frank February 22, 2013 at 05:18 PM
sorry, i'm in the keys enjoying my May Thais in the 80 degree weather. I get political when I'm buzzed... Not much to complain about down here except for mosquitoes. BTW, Florida is awesome, especially for the hard-working folks of RVC Florida has one of the best tax and asset protection climates of any state in the country, specifically: -no state income tax -no fiduciary tax -no intangible tax -AWESOME homestead law: you can have a multi-million dollar home and this residence will be virtually untouchable by creditors. BUT, do yourself a favor... speak to a attorney to make sure you end all Ties with NY. One dollar in the State of NY can trigger tax liabilities, even if you moved to Florida! Look to see some of you real soon.
Craig Lombardo February 23, 2013 at 06:21 AM
Frank was that you I saw waving from the plane flying over our house? I thought I saw you. Enjoy your time in the Keys. I've heard of the tax benefits to retiring down there. Sounds good for my wife and I when the time comes.


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