FAA Responds to City of Burien’s Petition Regarding Turbo Prop Overflights

News from the City of Burien

On April 13, 2017, the City of Burien received a letter from the Federal Aviation Agency (FAA) stating they would be ceasing the North Flow flight patterns over Burien. The North Flow flight corridor, also known as the “New Route,” has caused significant noise impacts to Burien parks, schools, residential neighborhoods and other noise-sensitive areas.

In the letter, the FAA states they have amended the letter of agreement they hold with Seattle Airport Traffic Control Tower by removing language that allowed propeller-driven aircraft to make automatic turns using the North Flow route. They also state they will returning to previous procedures guiding flight corridor routes.

Quiet Skies Coalition spokesperson Larry Cripe says, “We are pleased the FAA recognized our concerns about the impact of low-flying propeller-driven aircraft on our quality of life. The Coalition will continue to work with the FAA to make sure the voices of Burien residents are heard.”

On February 14, 2017, the City of Burien petitioned the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to review final decisions by the FAA related to North Flow flight departures from Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The petition asked the Court to review FAA’s denial of requests to modify or cease flights using the North Flow. The petition also asks to review the FAA’s decision to not reopen consultation or conduct the required environmental review of alternative routes that would cause less harm to the City and its residents. The City will continue working with the Quiet Skies Coalition to ensure resident concerns about flight patterns are included in the process.

“We are looking forward to working with the FAA to ensure they use the appropriate process for public engagement and environmental review of future flight patterns,” says Interim Burien City Manager Tony Piasecki. “We will remain vigilant, and continue to protect the interests of Burien residents.”

More information

· Letter: North Flow Departures from SeaTac Airport over the City of Burien [PDF]
· Petition for review [PDF]
· City of Burien Files Petition for Review Regarding Change in Flight Path [February 16, 2017 Press Release]

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