5 AM Airport Takeoff on 4th of July Wakes Up and Infuriates Santa Monica Neighbors
Was "an emergency aircraft flight for medical purposes," really worth it?
July 10, 2017
A medical evacuation jet taking off from Santa Monica Airport at 4:55 a.m. on the 4th of July awakened thousands of residents and presumably saving one patients life. It also violated an airport curfew from 10 pm to 7 am, on all takeoffs and landings.
Many airport residents questioned whether it was worth it. Chain e mail went to members of the City Council, and other local residents.
"I am still shaking from that take off..it was so loud," wrote Patty HMJ. "Do these folks, pilot even think of neighborhood day off to enjoy independence day..so Rude!!
And between that and loud illegal fireworks going off all night..... (makes me wonder) who owned that jet."
"We received a number of complaints associated with yesterday's 4:55 a.m. departure," acknowledged SMO Director Stelios Makrides "This operation was associated with an emergency aircraft flight for medical purposes. California PUC §21662.4 exempts emergency medical flights from local ordinances as long as the operator provides specific information regarding their departure. The PUC permits the operator to submit the required information regarding their medical emergency within 72 hours of their departure."
"Given the health consequences of noise exposure to this community (3.5% increased risk for older patient cardiovascular hospital admittance: http://www.bmj.com/content/347/bmj.f5561), perhaps the Airport Director should require documentation for all medevac flights from a disinterested third party," suggested local resident Joe Schmitz.
"It is a known fact by now that while residents can be sure of getting a ticket for parking on the street on street sweeping day," wrote airport opponent Alan Levenson.
"Airplanes can exceed the noise limits and get away with a warning or fine depending upon the discretion exercised by the city attorney's office and the reporting by the airport staff. It seems airplane noise violations should be held to a higher standard than street parking, since one violation can disturb countless individuals and reap handsome rewards for city coffers," Levenson, a local attorney, wrote.