From: Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi
Date: Mon, Oct 18, 2021 at 1:11 PM
Subject: 4 military helicopters today–RE: Agree with Barbara M–RE: Tour Helicopter Noise – PCNB NB INPUT
To: Nestor Garcia , Debra Laeha, Barbara Mayer
Cc: E. Funakoshi , Sen. Bennette Misalucha, Ina van Hest, media, Melissa Pavlicek, wheretalkworks , Butay, Jade , ross higashi, Ford N Fuchigami, Alex Tamoria, Rep. Lisa Marten, Rep. Scot Z. Matayoshi, Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi , Sen. Jarrett Keohokalole, Rep. David A. Tarnas, Councilmember Tommy Waters, rce, Dan Brown , Eileen Hilton MD , billhicksknb , Roberta Mayor, Rich Turbin, dylanparmstrong, Lani Blissard, Jeanne Herbert, Bruce Lum , hooverj001 , Rep. Ed Case , Jacqueline Conant , Nestor Garcia , kahelehi02 , Grace Ichikawa , Davin Aoyagi , Malia Nolan , Michelle Matson
Aloha, Nestor of Congressman Ed Case’s office,
Please provide report to me and to those on this email list.
Could you find out the altitude of 4 military helicopters flying over Kaimuki today, Oct. 18th:
a. at 10:14 – two/2 military [single-rotor with ‘thick’ tails]helicopters flying eastward, not over H-! highway but more like over Kaimuki Ave [a block and half makai of H-1 highway]. Maybe flying around 500 feet or lower over ground. [Remember all Kaimuki city blocks east of Kaimuki fire station are 600 feet by 400 feet]
b. at 10:56 – one/1 military [single rotor with ‘thin’ tail] helicopter flying eastward, not over H-1 highway but maybe over Kaimuki Ave or slightly mauka of Kaimuki ave [a block makai of H-1 highway]. Maybe flying slightly higher than prior helicopters in item (a) above, about 500 feet over ground.
c. at 12:10 – one/1 military [single rotor with ‘thin’ tail] helicopter flying eastward, likely over H-1 highway. Maybe about 1500 feet over ground.
-why was this helicopter flying at perhaps triple [3 times] the altitude as helicopter in item (b) above? Were instructions/flight path given by FAA different from this 12:10 helicopter? …and if so, why were FAA instructions different only for this helicopter?
Diamond Head, Kahala, Kaimuki, Kapahulu
From: Debra Laeha
Sent: Friday, October 15, 2021 4:48 PM
To: Barbara Mayer
Cc: E. Funakoshi ; Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi Sen. Bennette Misalucha ; Ina van Hest; media ; Melissa Pavlicek ; wheretalkworks ; Butay, Jade ; ross higashi ; Ford N Fuchigami ; Alex Tamoria ; Rep. Lisa Marten ; Rep. Scot Z. Matayoshi ; Sen. Jarrett Keohokalole ; Rep. David A. Tarnas ; Councilmember Tommy Waters ; rce ; Dan Brown ; Eileen Hilton MD ; billhicksknb ; Roberta Mayor ; Rich Turbin ; dylanparmstrong; Lani Blissard ; Jeanne Herbert ; Bruce Lum ; hooverj001 ; Rep. Ed Case ; Jacqueline Conant; Nestor Garcia ; kahelehi02 ; Grace Ichikawa ; Davin Aoyagi ; Malia Nolan ; Michelle Matson
Subject: Re: Agree with Barbara M–RE: Tour Helicopter Noise – PCNB NB INPUT
Yes, it is a major problem that will only get worse if nothing is done. No need for binoculars. The FlightRadar24 app has tail no., altitude and other flight info. Also..please sign the petition on the Quiet Skies Honolulu website
On Fri, Oct 15, 2021, 4:03 PM Barbara Mayer wrote:
Wow; I had no idea tourist helicopter noise was such an issue for many of us around Oʻahu!
FYI, attached is my data table & Ppt. that I shared with my Waimānalo Neighborhood Board meeting this past August 9. (Can you tell I’m a retired science teacher?!) I’ve also shared this info with my Rep., Lisa Marten, and my Senator, Chris Lee.
Perhaps if other people are able to document flights over their areas, our case against random tourist helicopter flights will be that much stronger. (But be prepared! It’s no fun to do 4 days of running outside with binoculars to document these overflights!)
On Fri, Oct 15, 2021 at 3:33 PM Debra Laeha wrote:
My family has lived in Maunawili for over 20 years. Our once peaceful valley is now inundated by commercial tour helicopters that crisscross our home all day, every day. Prior to Covid, there was a tour helicopter overhead every 4-5 minutes, all day, every day. With the resurgence of tourism, these numbers have once again become unbearable. Loud, low-flying military helicopters are making this already out-of-control situation even worse.
Tour helicopters fly over our community even on rainy, cloudy days, despite their lack of the equipment needed to navigate safely under these conditions. The need for this equipment was evidenced by the tragic tour helicopter crash that occurred under overcast conditions in Kailua Town in 2019 when the pilot, operating under only Visual Flight Rules (VFR), became disoriented by cloud cover. This is a huge safety concern for my family.
Through our collective voices–across all Islands–I am hopeful that we can make changes to the tour helicopter industry so that the health and welfare of our communities is once again valued over the tourist buck.
On Fri, Oct 15, 2021 at 2:55 PM E. Funakoshi wrote:
There also was a letter to the editor a couple of months ago on the same subject which I read to our board and the military representatives.
We just had a flyover this morning that shook my house. Our concerns for our health due to the noise and fear of one crashing on our homes is a real threat. I’m glad Representative Kobayashi is sharing our concerns also.
Sent: Friday, October 15, 2021 5:09 PM
To: ‘Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi’
Cc: ‘Barbara Mayer’ ; ‘Ina van Hest’ ; ‘media’ ; ‘Melissa Pavlicek’ ; ‘wheretalkworks’ ; ‘Butay, Jade’ ; ‘ross higashi’ ; ‘Ford N Fuchigami’ ; ‘Alex Tamoria’ ; ‘Rep. Lisa Marten’ ; ‘Rep. Scot Z. Matayoshi’; ‘Sen. Jarrett Keohokalole’ ; ‘Rep. David A. Tarnas’ ; ‘Councilmember Tommy Waters’ ; ‘rce’ ; ‘Dan Brown’ ; ‘Eileen Hilton MD’; ‘LVERAY’ ; ‘billhicksknb’ ; ‘Roberta Mayor’ ; ‘Rich Turbin’ >; ‘dylanparmstrong’ ; ‘Debra Laeha’ ; ‘Lani Blissard’ ; ‘Jeanne Herbert’ ; ‘Bruce Lum’ ; ‘hooverj001’ ; ‘Rep. Ed Case’ ; ‘Jacqueline Conant’ ; ‘Nestor Garcia’ ; ‘kahelehi02’ ; ‘Grace Ichikawa’ ; ‘Davin Aoyagi’
Subject: RE: Agree with Barbara M–RE: Tour Helicopter Noise – PCNB NB INPUT
We are having the same issue is Pearl City. I have expressed our concerns about civilian tour helicopters flying too low over residential areas of Pearl City. In addition, we engaged both the Marines and Army with their flights over Pearl City. Yes, they have an FAA approved air route that follows the H2 from Wheeler to the H1 Eastbound and Westbound flight paths but quite often they deviate offset 2,000 feet North of H1 which places their flight path dangerously over schools, hospitals and residential areas in case they have an in-flight emergency.
I have taken up these issues in our Pearl City Neighborhood Board meetings and had the military Army and Marines brief us on their operations to include training. We asked them to remind their pilots to be mindful that their low altitude, slow duration flights negatively impact the residential community from 0650-2315 hours mostly weekly.
We are still having issues with the military flights over Pearl City. Senator Misalucha may be sending the Army Garrison her letter. I recommend you please contact her and maybe jointly you work this issue.
If the helicopters fly above 1500 feet and increase their air speed, they will mitigate the disruptive noise. It is the Apache helos that have been the problem. The Chinook’s have been flying possibly at above 2500 Ft over central Oahu with minimum noise impact.
This morning, a USCG helo at a very low altitude below 400 feet, hot dogging with his sweep from downtown honolulu around Pearl Harbor and then beeline to Barbers Point airfield. Probably with a VIP onboard.. Their helos are much more quiet than the Apache and Cobra helos. When the Marine Osprey fly over Pearl City, our roofs vibrate and dust come off the ceilings.
WE need tighter controls over negatively impacting noise for our community. Importantly, when the helo comes down due to mechanical failure ( IT WILL HAPPEN), we don’t want it coming down on our residents, schools and hospitals.
Chair, Pearl City Neighborhood Board No. 21
From: “Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi”
To: “Barbara Mayer”, “Ina van Hest”
Cc: “media”, “Melissa Pavlicek”, “wheretalkworks”, Jade”, “ross higashi”, “Ford N Fuchigami”, “Alex Tamoria”, “Rep. Lisa Marten”, “Rep. Scot Z. Matayoshi”, “Sen. Jarrett Keohokalole”, “Rep. David A. Tarnas”, “Councilmember Tommy Waters”, “rce”, “Dan Brown”, “Eileen Hilton MD”, “LVERAY”, “billhicksknb”, “Roberta Mayor”, “Rich Turbin”, “dylanparmstrong”, “Debra Laeha”, “Lani Blissard”, “Jeanne Herbert”, “Bruce Lum”, “hooverj001”, “Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi”, “Rep. Ed Case”, “Jacqueline Conant”, “Nestor Garcia”, “kahelehi02”, “Grace Ichikawa”, “Davin Aoyagi”,
Sent: Friday October 15 2021 7:35:34PM
Subject: Agree with Barbara M–RE: Tour Helicopter Noise
Aloha to all,
I agree with Barbara Mayer about sharing our personal experiences but maybe in addition, a log of these shared experiences might make a stronger and more complete picture of helicopter disturbances. Perhaps a PUBLIC log might be good [possible to create a website]…and divided between military and civilian helicopters.
I live in Kaimuki 2 and half blocks from H-1 freeway, which is supposedly the flight path for military helicopters going eastward to Big Island for training. Every once in a while, I will get a phone call asking me [in real time] if I can hear the low-flying helicopters or that the helicopters are directly overhead, not following H-1 highway closely, i.e, 2 blocks to the side of H-1 highway. Fyi—those helicopters flying 2 blocks mauka of H-1 highway sometimes result in complaints from St. Louis Hts and Maunalani Hts [both close to H-1 highway] that residents see helicopters level [at same height] with their homes in the heights.
Nestor Garcia of Congressman Case’s office: hi, Nestor.
Maybe you can pass on suggestions to the military:
1. to remind helicopter pilots that they should be flying at least 500 feet above ground, not 500 feet altitude, which would put helicopters closer to the ground when flying over the ‘hill’ of Kaimuki.
2. to fly at a bit higher than 500 feet above ground, not close/exactly 500 feet above ground…because flying close to 500 above ground results in complaints of violations.
3. when more than one military helicopters fly together, which increases the noise, multiple helicopters should an extra bit higher than a single helicopter does.
As to civilian helicopters – there is no enforcement of rules by FAA or anyone, so they do anything they can get away with…which is anything!
Diamond Head, Kahala, Kaimuki, Kapahulu
From: Barbara Mayer
Sent: Friday, October 15, 2021 10:14 AM
To: Ina van Hest
Cc: media ; Melissa Pavlicek ; wheretalkworks ; Butay, Jade ; ross higashi ; Ford N Fuchigami ; Alex Tamoria ; Rep. Lisa Marten ; Rep. Scot Z. Matayoshi ; Sen. Jarrett Keohokalole ; Rep. Bertrand Kobayashi ; Rep. David A. Tarnas ; Councilmember Tommy Waters ; rce ; Dan Brown; Eileen Hilton MD ; LVERAY <firstname.lastname@example.org>; billhicksknb ; Roberta Mayor >; Rich Turbin ; dylanparmstrong; Debra Laeha; Lani Blissard ; Jeanne Herbert ; Bruce Lum <; hooverj001 ; Rep. Ed Case ; Jacqueline Conant ; Nestor Garcia ; kahelehi02 <; Grace Ichikawa ; Davin Aoyagi
Subject: Re: Tour Helicopter Noise
Thank you Ina,
I think it might move helicopter prohibitions along, the more we share our personal experiences and bring this issue to our representatives. (There’s a loud tourist helicopter going over my Waimānalo home as I type.)
You have brought up this issue of safety; good. I have a friend who started his career as a young man, a videographer with one of the local TV stations. He later started his own company and had a full professional life. He said he would never fly in a helicopter, a flying machine with only one propeller!
I have not wanted to mention it, but I think another safety concern is with angry citizens aiming lazers at noisy helicopters. Of course, neither you nor I would ever, ever do such a thing…but I fear there are people who would, if they were angry enough.
We must have restrictions on helicopters (and small, tourist planes)!
MS; nature, science educator
On Fri, Oct 15, 2021 at 9:08 AM Ina van Hest wrote:
I would like to comment on the issue of increasing commercial helicopter tours we are subjected to on a daily basis. We have lived peacefully in our home of 25 years, at the base of the Ko’olau Mountain Range. Now, it is helicopter tours daily, all day long, sometimes coming in a row like LAX as they circle and hover over our residential developments, we can neither ignore nor block out the incessant noise intrusions. Occasionally two are circling each other like a Star Wars game as they go in and out of the craggy vertical faces of the Ko’olaus. It rivals helicopter noise during the Vietnam War! Since when did we become what feels like a helicopter freeway over our homes? We have installed double-paned windows with slight improvement, but the impact on our health remains significant. Gardening and enjoyment of our private yards without anxiety and fear are in the past. Are we waiting for another crash as happened in Kailua some years ago? It is a matter of WHEN not IF a crash will occur over a residential neighborhood such as mine. This has become a public health issue……please address it.
I applaud you for all your efforts, and look forward to relief.
Ina van Hest. M.D.