FAA Update Dec 18 Culver Lawsuit Fails

 Residents from Santa Monica to Downtown LA continue to suffer under the Federal Aviation’s Administrations new flight path “NextGen” - a single line superhighway of incoming flights from the west and north designed to save fuel for the airlines and make the increasing number of flights easier to manage.  But it has also put a single lane highway of relentless flights, often only minutes apart, over people under the path.  The planes come in at Santa Monica at about 7,500 feet and begin a quick descent to 3,500 ft. by the time they hit downtown Los Angeles within 2 minutes, where they spin around to join the flights coming in from the east. The sound of whining breaks and relentless low flying planes has become part of background noise to the 10's of 1,000's of lives under the path around the country. 

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Recently many hung their heads in despair when they discovered three lawsuits out of Culver City against the FAA, lost in court.  They could not prove the FAA had done anything illegal. Although the rules the FAA abided by were inadequate to the circumstance they can only be changed by congress. It was a difficult loss for the activists and Culver City who had dedicated enormous time and money fighting to get their peaceful lives and healthy air back.  

Despite the FAA’s acute awareness of the swift and aggressive reaction from tortured (yes it feels like torture) people across the country, they swat away the concerns and continue to add flights and lower altitudes.  During a legally obligated dog and pony presentation in Burbank where the FAA is getting ready to implement new NextGen flight paths, activists from Burbank's Uproar LA and LA's Sky Justice National Network showed up for a rousing protest that ended with chants of “Shame!!” directed towards the FAA official who refused to answer questions. It can be seen on Youtube  Nextgen Burbank Protest  

Dec18FAA1Meanwhile hope still shines in the Los Angeles City Attorney’s office. They have a window of opportunity to file a lawsuit against the FAA who violated their own rules regarding altitude requirements.  The City Attorney's Community Liasion Rob Wilcox assured jittery residents the City Attorney  is serious about the effort to negotiate a workable solution and find real relief for affected residents. They have put together a team of lawyers including a lawyer who fought a successful lawsuit against the FAA for Phoenix and they have extended several deadlines to file the suit preferring to work toward solutions. 
Residents argue for rerouting late overnight flights to land at the airport directly from the ocean rather than fly over the city to spin around and join eastern arriving flights. Flights from Asia often come in at 3 am at altitudes of 3,500 ft. rousing everyone under the path from their sleep. They also want a substantial increase in altitudes and creating several paths during the daytime flight paths, as it used to be, without incident.  Putting airline profits above resident  health and sane, peaceful enjoyment of their property is untenable.  As one activist proclaimed, "Technology at the service of humans, not humans at the service of technology!" Others caution that flight paths dispersed won’t work without capping the number of planes allowed to come in and out of the airport. No doubt increased capacity is coming. Capping the number allowed to land at the airport is something the City of Los Angeles does have power over (FAA controls what happens in the sky, the city controlled airport what happens on the ground) and so far there has been no discussion of this critical issue by the Airport, Mayor or City Council representatives whose districts are affected, Herb Wesson, Mike Bonin and Marquis Harris-Dawson. 

If you want to stay up to speed or participate join the Sky Justice National Network Facebook page, a working hub of over 500 activists around the country who share information, strategies and support for the effort. Or join the Quiet Skies Action Network where you will occasionally be asked to send an email or make a call along with the other over 500 already on the network. Just email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and put Join the Network in the subject line. 


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Established in August of 2008 by writerartist Dianne V. Lawrence, The Neighborhood News covers the events, people, history, politics and historic architecture of communities throughout the Mid-City and West Adams area in Los Angeles Council District 10.

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