Noise affects individuals, wildlife
and our community's vibrancy.
A total of 82 Navy EA 18Gs (Growlers) are now based at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island (NASWI). These aircraft are generating huge amounts of noise throughout the region – especially in Island, Skagit, Jefferson, Clallam, and San Juan Counties. Victoria, Canada, is also receiving the noise.
The Growlers have a low frequency component to their noise which rattles houses and windows and feels like an assault to our bodies. In the San Juan Islands the noise is often between 60 - 85 dbA inside homes and 75 - 95 dbA outside.
One resident observed a crew that was cutting trees and running a giant chipper. "We all had ear protection on and the wall of jet noise was all we could hear. Everything was muted by the roar."
During Field Carrier Landing Practice and Carrier Controlled Approaches the noise goes on for 2-4 hours, frequently until 11, 12 or 1AM.
We don't need more Growlers!
Naval Air Base Whidbey Island had 75,000 operations (takeoffs and landings) to and from Ault Field in 2014. Ault is the field that generates the noise that we receive in San Juan County. The plan is for all Growlers in the U.S. to be based at Whidbey.
Through Freedom of Information Act documents we have learned, and the Navy has admitted, that they are asking for 36 more Growlers. This means more training and more noise. At the moment there is heavy lobbying going on to get funding for these aircraft.
More Growlers equal more operations, more air traffic and more noise.
And on the subject of more Growlers, we have not even begun to experience the noise and overflights of the INCOMING P-8A'S. This is a military Boeing 737.
QUIET SKIES IS ASKING NAS WHIDBEY ISLAND AND OUR LEGISLATORS:
- Minimize overflights of San Juan County.
- Avoid flying below 3,000 over San Juan County.
- Reduce the noise impact of stationary engine run-ups. Install a Hush House.
- Minimize the use of afterburners.
- Take technical measures to reduce engine noise.
Over 25,000 electronic letters have been sent to Congress to ask for additional production of the Growler to the Fiscal Year 2015 budget from a link on the Boeing website. What is YOUR opinion? You can write or e-mail Richard V. Spencer, Secretary of the Navy, AND your elected officials. Click here for their contact information.