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Asking Politely Has Not Curbed Helicopter Noise in Los Angeles

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Total shocker: the voluntary rules the Federal Aviation Administration handed out to try and cut down on helicopter noise above Los Angeles aren't working super well. According to activists looking to shush the choppers, their talks with the FAA and helicopter companies have "broken down completely" without ever having made any "real significant progress" on the plan to create helicopter routes at higher altitudes, which activists think would decrease noise, says the Daily News. (The rules apply to news, tourist, and for-hire helicopters, not police aircraft, which cause the most noise throughout most of LA anyway...)

The FAA and helicopter companies, meanwhile, seem to think everything's moving along just fine. Take this recent report, confidently titled "Significant Progress Report on the Los Angeles Helicopter Noise Initiative," which documents the tough actions taken to try and get pilots on board with keeping it down, like handing out flyers (ooh!), putting information up on government websites that most of the pilots are probably not reading, and asking helicopters not to fly over Coachella in 2014 (?). (The report "sat on an FAA desk for three months before it was released.")

Residents who are fighting for more restrictions on helicopters and the noise they generate were so hopeful that some kind of resolution could be reached after a website for lodging complaints about helicopter noise launched in late March. But that seems to have been a dead end. "The FAA has determined that significant progress has been made in reducing helicopter noise in Los Angeles. I only wish that were the case," says Representative Adam Schiff of Burbank, who has led the anti-helicopter legislative efforts. "The FAA's conclusion that residents have already achieved meaningful relief represents the triumph of hope over experience."
· Have talks to reduce helicopter noise in Los Angeles County hit a wall? [LADN]
· Feds Set Up Way For Rich 'Hoods to Complain About Helicopters [Curbed LA]
· Feds Hoping Helicopters Just Agree to Be Quieter on Their Own [Curbed LA]