Old Westbury trustee fights plane noise with Airnoise tracking device

Old Westbury trustee fights plane noise with Airnoise tracking device
Old Westbury Trustee Leslie Fastenberg, left, is stepping down. (Photo by Amelia Camurati)

North Shore residents say they have been plagued with low-flying planes over their homes bound for or leaving the two international airports within 20 miles.

During a Board of Trustees meeting on May 21, Village of Old Westbury Trustee Leslie Fastenberg said she has taken a proactive approach to the constant noise by using Airnoise.io every time she hears a plane.

“There is an ongoing problem in Old Westbury with planes coming in at all levels and creating horrible noise,” Fastenberg said. “We are 17 miles from the airport, and planes are coming in at less than 2,000 feet over our houses.”

Airnoise.io was founded last year to track airplane noise and generate reports for its users. (Photo courtesy of Airnoise)

The company, which was founded last year in San Diego, California, by Chris McCann, a software developer and former Air Force pilot, costs $5 per month to run and the handheld device, which has a one-time $20 fee, can be pressed whenever a plane is heard overhead.

Fastenberg said she gets a report daily, weekly and monthly of what planes were in the vicinity of her home when she pressed the button, and she generated a report of 35 complaints during the week before the meeting.

The report includes the type of plane, the operator, the call sign, the distance in miles from your location to the plane and the flight path altitude for every button press.

On May 20, Fastenberg activated the device 30 times between 7:34 a.m. and 1:32 p.m., and 10 of the complaints were before 9 a.m.

The lowest altitude plane of the day was an American Airlines Boeing 737. The plane was 1.1 miles from Fastenberg’s home and was flying at an altitude of 1,925 feet.

On average, the highest altitude reached during a commercial flight is about 35,000 feet, according to USA Today.

According to the FAA, the Office of Flight Standards monitors aircraft operations and should be contacted directly with complaints about low flying planes. Four flight standards district offices exist in New York, including one in Garden City and one in Farmingdale at Republic Airport.

Complaints across the North Shore have increased since the creation in 2012 of the Federal Aviation Administration’s Next Generation Air Transport System, or NextGen.

The air traffic overhaul, which is scheduled to be finished by 2025, saves companies  time and money but has created narrower lanes for air traffic.

In East Hills, the village’s website has an online submission form for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey to add contact information, the time and type of the complaint and additional comments.

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  1. We too are suffering in Los Angeles, with planes flying over our homes every TWO MINUTES. With the Airnoise button I recorded 7 airplanes within 13 minutes–between 6:40 am and 6:53 am this morning. It’s a disgrace.

  2. I just signed up for the airnoise service because it seemed that an airplane was flying by every two minutes for HOURS! I recorded every airplane from 10:30pm until after 1am when it finally stopped and it must have logged over 60 flights in that short amount of time! I felt like I was on a runway!


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