Petition to CAA that Edinburgh Airport Ltd (EAL) stop planes flying over West Fife and surrounds and refuse the Airport’s flight path proposals.Sign here… goo.gl/SPW8aD
The consultation exercises are flawed and the Airport have not taken into account the concerns of the communities. More info https://goo.gl/zjE7J2 but to summarise:-
- There is an alternative, one which many residents have suggested but not one that EAL appears to have seriously considered. That is fly to the east over the Firth of Forth to Inchkeith Island then turn left or right and fly above 10,000 feet
- Sleep deprivation because of flights outside of World Health Organisation guidelines
- There is a Health risk for communities, schools and local businesses
- The Flight Path is over densely populated areas – 10,000 people plus
- There is a Health risk to a high elderly and disabled population
- EAL have not listened to the community and…
- The CAA imply that EAL have mis-informed the Community. That is … there is no need to monitor noise against actuals during their modelling process. For clarity Edinburgh Airport need to validate modelling data against actuals, although the CAA also say their modelling data based on Gatwick area is accurate.
- More concentrated flight paths means a constant flow of air traffic 24/7 and 365 days a year
- House Prices could drop
WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT
Edinburgh Airport Limited (EAL) are in the process of changing the flight paths around the airport which will increase noise in Dalgety Bay and surrounding areas. Proposed flight path E7a means:
- 80 or more flights a day over Dalgety Bay from 6am to 11pm (planes overhead at 6-8am at a frequency of one every two or three minutes). The World Health Organisation states that communities should have 8 hours of respite from noise pollution. Currently planes fly over Dalgety Bay on an easterly wind (about 120 days a year). Route E, together with proposed route D, means there could be flights up to 365 days a year.
- Noise levels of up to 80dB which is like every house in Dalgety Bay having a busy road built right above it. Planes have flown over Dalgety Bay on an easterly wind since the 1970s but the experience of residents is that the impact is significantly worse in the last couple of years. Aircraft height has been monitored and some planes are flying at less than 4,000 feet. Aircraft are not allowed to fly over Edinburgh at this height due to the noise.
- Health impacts from having less than 8 hours undisturbed sleep at night and regular noise throughout the day.
- Children’s health and education is at risk as the proposed flight path affects several schools. These are Aberdour Primary, Donibristle Primary, Dalgety Bay Primary, Inverkeithing Primary, North Queensferry Primary and Inverkeithing High School. (The community have a noise monitor which tracks the closeness of the planes to two Dalgety Bay schools)
- Impacts on the high proportion of elderly and disabled people under the flight path. This has been acknowledged by equalities staff at EAL but they are unwilling to highlight the issue in the consultation documents.
- The technology for landing and take-off is changing and this will mean traffic on a more concentrated flight path. Currently the planes are more dispersed which means that different houses are impacted throughout the day. With a narrower flight path, the same houses will suffer a constant flow of plane traffic every day. And not just on an easterly wind as happens now.
But there is an alternative, one which many residents have suggested but not one that EAL appears to have seriously considered. That is fly to the east over the Firth of Forth to Inchkeith Island. After leaving the airport planes could gain height over the Forth towards Inchkeith then be directed to either turn left towards Dalgety Bay and reach heights above 10,000 feet or follow a path to the right and gain similar height.
During the latest consultation, EAL made it clear that they are not interested in developing alternative flight paths. To that end we are asking for this new flight path to be investigated and for the CAA to refuse EAL’s application until the full investigation is completed and communities have been properly consulted.
In addition to the impacts of proposed flight path E7a, the recent consultation was flawed. The information EAL sent to residents on both the second and third consultations was incomplete and/or misleading.
This is confirmed by:
Lesley Laird MP who has sent the CAA a letter that outlines those very flaws in the third consultation and Neil Findlay MSP did very much the same for the second consultation. Academics and legal professionals have also highlighted the many errors and omissions throughout the documents. Douglas Chapman MP and Annabelle Ewing MSP have both been actively involved and have contacted the CAA too.
For example, the consultation:
- Does not look properly at reasonable alternatives put forward by residents. They have clearly put the needs of airlines above the needs of communities. With every consultation on route E they have moved the route closer to people, despite being told people do not want to be overflown.
- Does not provide enough information to allow people to make an informed decision – information was not clear and concise and there were many omissions and misleading statements. For example, average, not maximum, flight numbers were given which mask the full impact.
- Did not make a proper attempt to fully engage people – EAL had to be asked to hold a public meeting to answer questions and even then, many people were only informed the day before it took place.
- Is based on inaccurate data – modelling uses data from other areas and appears to underestimate the noise impact. Monitoring was not undertaken to inform EAL’s application.
- Did not cover all affected/relevant areas – for example residents in Aberdour were not specifically targeted and information only deposited in the library there 10 days before the close of the consultation.
- Did not give people adequate time to respond – a consultation period of 5 weeks was inadequate given the changes to route E.
- We recognise that the airport is important to the Scottish economy, however this does not have to mean that the health and amenity of the people living under the flight paths should suffer. To that end we:
- Are not asking Edinburgh Airport to stop flying, but flight paths should avoid significant impact on our communities.
- Flight paths should make more use of the Forth and only fly over significant centres of population at much greater heights i.e. over 10,000 feet which would greatly reduce the noise pollution over our homes, schools and community facilities.
- To that end we are asking for this new flight path to be investigated and for the CAA to refuse EAL’s application until the full investigation is completed and communities have been properly consulted.
- EAL say they have listened and met the needs of the communities. The experience from the communities is that they have:-
– not listened,
– not explained and
– do not wish to cooperate and work with the community.
We are asking that EAL undertake a full and proper consultation with information that is easy to understand and shows the full impacts of the proposals.
As a last resort the community are prepared to investigate the case for a legal challenge to any decision made by the CAA due to the reasons given above.