September 16, 2020
The EPA defines Noise Pollution from the Clean Air Act as a sound that becomes unwanted when it either interferes with normal activities such as sleeping, conversation, or disrupts or diminishes one’s quality of life. The fact that you can’t see, taste or smell it may help explain why it has not received as much attention as other types of pollution, such as air pollution, or water pollution. The air around us is constantly filled with sounds, yet most of us would probably not say we are surrounded by noise. Though for some, the persistent and escalating sources of sound can often be considered an annoyance. This “annoyance” can have major consequences, primarily to one’s overall health.
As a resident of Kailua, I am opposed to any commercial/tour based helicopter (or air based) tours over Kailua. Having lived in Imperial Beach, California before becoming a Kailua resident I know and understand first hand how much helicopter noise pollution can negatively impact residential neighborhoods. With helicopter air traffic running all day, night and every weekend it is a constant strain. This commercial and in my opinion optional activity is completely unnecessary (I do not oppose the use of helicopters for Military / Department of Defense / National Security trainings and exercises). Many in Kailua/ Oahu in general enjoy an indoor/outdoor home the noise pollution created by these helicopters would be inescapable with most of the Kailua’s louvered & older single pane windows, roofs, and single walled constructed homes.
There are major security issues to consider with our proximity to Marine Corp Base Hawaii, and other active duty military installations.
Given the population density of Kailua, we were very lucky that the Oneawa crash did not result in more major loss of life and property (in the aircraft and of those on the ground). Hawaii was not that lucky when the commercial tour crash occurred at Pearl Harbor National Memorial a few years ago.
I DO NOT support commercial air tours over Kailua. Our town is already over promoted and inundated with visitors who are kind enough to spend their money here with local businesses. Let’s keep their feet on the ground, in our local shops, and out of the sky.