Wed, Oct 17, 2012
Group Seeks A Mandatory Over-Water Route To East Hampton Airport
A group of local, state, and federal elected officials representing the eastern portion of Long Island, NY, have renewed a petition with the FAA to mandate an over-water route for helicopters flying to East Hampton Airport (KHTO).
The 19-member group is being led by Congressman Tim Bishop (D) as well as two New York State Assemblymen and a State Senator. They had supported the Northern and Atlantic routes to KHTO in a June 24 letter to the FAA, but so far, only the northern route has been approved by the agency. The online news site Riverhead Local reports that in a joint written statement, the officials said that "The current situation remains unsatisfactory. For some local communities, the situation has actually gotten worse during the summer of 2012."
The statement goes on to say that noise from helicopters can "only be substantially mitigated by reducing the number of north/south helicopter transits. The establishment of the mandatory North Shore Route mitigated the impacts of helicopter noise in Nassau County and Western Suffolk by keeping helicopters one mile offshore in the Long Island Sound, but did nothing to alleviate the problem on the East End. This goal can only be accomplished by the establishment of both an Atlantic Route and a North Shore Route. We urge the FAA to act immediately to approve the Atlantic Route."
That route would force helicopters traveling from New York City to KHTO to fly a route entirely over water north of Long Island before turning south and backtracking to the west over Gardiners Bay while approaching the airport.
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