Rosendahl Pursues Santa Monica Airport Changes


Bill Rosendahl

From Councilman Rosendahl:


Policy aims to reduce noise and pollution and increase overall safety around municipal airport

Responding to concerns from residents in Venice, Mar Vista, and West L.A. regarding air pollution and safety, yesterday Councilman Bill Rosendahl and Councilwoman Janice Hahn moved to make it the official policy of the City of Los Angeles to pursue a change in the departure path at Santa Monica Airport (SMO), and to close down its six flight schools, their offices announced Thursday.

Rosendahl and Hahn presented the resolution to Council colleagues during the meeting this morning after local residents expressed concern. The neighbors are frustrated over highly-concentrated jet emissions from aircraft that sit and idle on the runway at Santa Monica Airport, waiting for commercial jets from LAX to clear the airspace ahead.The jet emissions spew out into the dense residential neighborhood nearby.Changing the flight path at SMO so that it doesn’t intersect with LAX’s flight path would reduce delays and cut down on idling time at Santa Monica.

A recent study by the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) measured 1,000 times normal levels of ultra-fine particles and 250 times normal levels of black carbon within the Los Angeles residential neighborhood directly downwind of Santa Monica Airport.

“We can’t sit and wait anymore for the FAA to make this change,” said Rosendahl, “we need to start lobbying Washington D.C. for a permanent solution to the suffocating jet emissions from Santa Monica Airport.”

Councilwoman Hahn added, “I sat down last week in a West L.A. home and listened to residents talk about the toxic fumes that seep into their neighborhoods from SMO.I heard for myself the jet engines idling on the runway nearby. As a long-time advocate for clean air and a healthy environment, I want to do something now.”

Last year, a flight school airplane from SMO crashed into the Penmar Golf Course in Venice, killing the pilot and raising grave safety concerns for local residents.Aircraft from the airport’s six flight schools regularly perform dangerous maneuvers over homes in the area.Rosendahl and Hahn proposed closing the flight schools at SMO.

“I can’t understand why we would have pilots-in-training performing these maneuvers over densely populated areas,” said Hahn.“We should close down those schools at SMO, and move them to a safer location.”

“The last crash happened over a golf course,” Rosendahl said, “and I’m not going to wait to move on this until the next one happens over another neighborhood in our district.”



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