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Atherton urges Surf Air to fly at higher altitudes

Original post made on May 27, 2014

Taking a new approach in efforts to reduce airplane noise over Atherton, the town is sending a letter to the Federal Aviation Administration urging that planes fly at a higher altitude until closer to the San Carlos Airport.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, May 27, 2014, 10:43 AM

Comments (11)

Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on May 27, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Peter Carpenter is a registered user.

This is a great solution which will lower the noise footprint over Atherton and not simply shift the noise to other communities.

Well done Atherton.

Posted by LGA, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on May 27, 2014 at 1:30 pm

I understand that Surf Air provides a service many people are interested in, and that the airport is required to accommodate their flights because of grant or other monies received, but did they have to pick the noisiest planes on the planet? After all, they're taking off & landing over densely populated residential areas. It would have been nice if they'd kept that in mind while making their plans.

Posted by Michael G. Stogner, a resident of another community
on May 27, 2014 at 1:33 pm

Great changes hope it works out, higher and cleaner should make a big difference. I have seen and heard this plane many times and when it is dirty (gear down) it is noisy.

Good work everyone

Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 27, 2014 at 1:36 pm


they chose the safest propeller driven plane on the planet. Which would you rather have, a very safe plane flying over making a little more noise or a quieter one that isn't as safe?

Posted by LGA, a resident of Menlo Park: Fair Oaks
on May 27, 2014 at 5:21 pm

Menlo Voter:

As long as the fuel boost pumps are working and the pilot remembers the FSII de icing additive.
Web Link
Web Link

Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 27, 2014 at 5:57 pm

Menlo Voter is a registered user.


I've read the reports. Look at the statistics for this aircraft. It is the safest single engine propeller driven aircraft in the world. In addition, it is certified for single pilot operation, but Surfair has chosen to operate them with TWO pilots. This adds another level of redundancy and hence safety. You should be more concerned about what could happen to you driving your car than having one of these aircraft fly over your head.

Posted by UC Davis Grad, a resident of another community
on May 27, 2014 at 6:04 pm

As someone who lives in the direct flight path of Moffett Field, I find this discussion rather amusing (which probably doesn't reflect well on me, alas).

I wonder how the fair residents of Atherton would have reacted in the heyday of Moffett, when Navy patrol flights and cargo planes were taking off and landing on a constant basis.

Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 27, 2014 at 7:56 pm

Menlo Voter is a registered user.

UC Davis Grad:

I lived in that landing pattern back in the 70's. We had P3 Orions passing overhead almost constantly. To hear some in Atherton describe the Surfair over flights as "torture" is laughable. It's really funny that these rich folks want to stick their heads in the sand and try to pretend they live in some "rural" enclave all the while under the airspace of three major airports. The stupidity or hubris, I'm not sure which it is, is awe inspiring.

Posted by Juan Motai, a resident of Menlo Park: Suburban Park/Lorelei Manor/Flood Park Triangle
on May 27, 2014 at 10:54 pm

I am amazed that a positive outcome can reveal so much about human nature! Everyone is happy with the course of events and yet contributors to this forum turn it into a criticism of "rich folks in Atherton." I live next to the tracks in Menlo Park, am not wealthy, and I struggle with the noise these Surfair planes make. These flights are new as is scheduled commercial air traffic at San Carlos airport. I am happy with the action taken by the Atherton Council. They took action instead of just complaining or criticizing others.

Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of Menlo Park: other
on May 28, 2014 at 6:58 am


I live close to the tracks as well which is another reason I find the whole thing laughable. We live in an urban environment. It's noisy. What else is new?

Posted by Will Emite, a resident of another community
on May 28, 2014 at 8:35 am

I still believe that leaf blowers make way more noise, and it seems to go on all day instead of just those few times a day for the planes. The kids love the airplanes, not so thrilled about the leaf blowers.

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