Fatigue, Aggravation and Anger: the state of aircraft noise

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by Arline L. Bronzaft, Ph.D., Board of Directors, GrowNYC, Co-founder, The Quiet Coalition, and Honorary Chair, Quiet American Skies

When I wrote the article “Aircraft Noise: The Ailment and the Treatment” in 2001, I suggested that residents who are overwhelmed by aircraft noise describe their suffering with the acronym “FAA”: Fatigue, Aggravation and Anger. This acronym also identifies the Federal Aviation Administration.

Since I wrote this article, research linking noise to adverse mental and physical health impacts has grown stronger. The number of groups that have formed to combat aircraft noise has increased considerably. Media attention on the distress experienced by people living with aircraft noise is more plentiful. Now that there is greater awareness about the dangers of aircraft noise, I have to wonder if it’s resulted in a significant reduction in aircraft noise impacts.

Unfortunately I have to say no, while recognizing minor improvements have been made at some airports. I believe the acronym “FAA” can still be used in 2024 to describe some people’s feelings about aircraft noise. I came to this conclusion after working closely with many groups comprised of residents combating aircraft noise. So I must ask our readers, especially those exposed to aircraft noise, to look through my 2001 article and to let me know how they think aircraft noise reduction efforts have changed.

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