Levels Remain Constant Even As Airport Gets Busier
Efforts to reduce jet engine noise have resulted in real
benefits for those living near Wyoming's Jackson Hole Airport.
Officials there say noise levels have held steady over the years...
even as more passengers arrive and depart the airport.
The reason? Quieter airplane engines, and voluntary programs
that keep planes away from residential areas.
Assistant airport director Jeanne Kirkpatrick says the airport
has seen an increase in the number of commercial aircraft flying
with engines that meet or exceed the Stage III standard.
Airport director Ray Bishop told the Jackson Hole News &
Guide the airport’s 2006 annual noise report “good news
“All of the noise at the airport is well below our
established goal and the enplanements have gone up
dramatically,” said Bishop. “There are more people on
quieter and less frequent airplanes. If you look at any airport
throughout the country, the Stage III engines are lowering the
noise footprint dramatically. It’s been a quiet revolution,
so to speak.”
Airport officials add Jackson Hole is meeting both its
FAA-required noise limits, as well as requirements for nearby Grand
Teton National Park. Noise measurements are taken at a variety of
areas within the park.
The airport also encourages pilots to arrive and depart the
airport's south end whenever possible, as well as other voluntary
noise-abatement procedures designed to avoid overflying residential
“We have a volunteer program,” said Bishop.
“At the end of the day, it’s up to the pilot. He has
the safety right to say ‘no.’”
Some airlines have been more resistant to the voluntary
guidelines than others, says Bishop.
“United Airlines has been more reluctant to turn than
other airlines,” said Bishop. “But, we’re working
on that. We’re trying to be the best neighbor we know how to
Noise reduction methods aren't limited to engine guidelines or
designated flight routes, however. Bishop says the airport also
plans to plant about 200 spruce trees along the airport's
perimeter, to muffle noise even further.