Noise News for Week of February 6, 2000

New York Town Official Begins Fourth Term Promising a Limit on Leaf Blowers

DATE: February 7, 2000
SECTION: News; Page A20
BYLINE: Errol A. Cockfield
DATELINE: North Hempstead, New York

According to an article in Newsday, a local city official began her fourth term in North Hempstead, promising to limit the use of leaf blowers.

North Hempstead Supervisor May Newburger said that unless a town has both its finances and its human service agencies in order, it is " morally bankrupt."

The article said that Newburger called leafblowers a nuisance, and will sponsor a law prohibiting their use during certain times of the year.

NPC Noise News
NPC Home

Winconsin Condo Owner's Damp Roof Probable Cause of Noise

PUBLICATION: Scripps Howard News Service
DATE: February 7, 2000
SECTION: Life Style
BYLINE: Dwight Barnett
DATELINE: Mayville, Wisconsin

The Life Style section of the Scripps Howard News Service printed a letter from someone asking about a creaking noise in the roof of her condominium. The letter appears in its entirety.

Q: "We live in a new condo that has what the builder calls a trussed roof system. There is a creaking noise in the roof. The noise starts at one end of the unit and travels to the other end. We most often hear the noise as the sun is going down, but it can be heard at other times of the day as well. Last winter we had 18-inch icicles hanging from the exhaust vents at the roof. As a result, we had water damage to the living areas. What can you tell us about the creaking noise?"

According to the editor of the column, the wood truss system in the building is damp, expanding and contracting as the temperature changes with the setting sun. The article said that when the lumber has had enough time to dry out, the creaking will stop. The article warned that too much moisture in the attic, a secondary supply source for moisture, or ice on the vents are signs of a serious moisture problem.

The article went on to say that secondary moisture includes bathroom vent fans (which must vent all the way to the overhang of the home); the clothes dryer vent pipe (which must vent to the exterior, never to the basement); attic or crawl space; the kitchen range vent fans (which must vent to the exterior); the whole-house fan, (which must be insulated and covered on the attic side in the winter) and loose seals around access doors or stairways to the attic.

In addition, the article said the humidity level of the attic must be less than 40 percent. Attics, the report went on to say, must have one square foot of free venting per 150 square feet of attic floor space. Vents in the roof as well as vents in the overhang will reduce venting to 1 in 300 square feet.

According to the article, electric fans must have a humidstat control as well as a thermostat.

The article suggested consulting a qualified expert to measure the attic and the amount of venting space, and pose solutions. C. Dwight Barnett, a master inspector certified by the American Society of Home Inspectors, wrote the article. For more information, mail your questions to him at P.O. Box 14091, Evansville, IN 47728, or e-mail

NPC Noise News
NPC Home

Orange County Airports Topic of Heated Discussion

PUBLICATION: Los Angeles Times
DATE: February 6, 2000
SECTION: Metro; Part B; Page 13; Metro Desk
DATELINE: Orange County, California

The Los Angeles Times printed letters of complaint about John Wayne Airport and whether air traffic should be rerouted to nearby proposed El Toro airport, which is not yet constructed. The letters are printed in their entirety.

"The article 'O.C. Vows to Keep Lid on John Wayne' (Jan. 30) left me incredulous.

Now, incompetent Orange County airport planners are at it again, this time asking us to relax and not to worry about 24-hour, seven-day airport operations at El Toro.

Why should we not worry?

Well, those same planners who hope to have all El Toro flights take off uphill, with a tail wind, toward the mountains, against the pilots' best judgment, are now going to argue to the Federal Aviation Administration that local control over noise and flights at John Wayne is absolute and that such authority should also extend to a new airport at El Toro.

So now county planners are trying to tell the FAA what to do. This, in spite of the 1990 federal law that prohibits such local control of flights and noise.

Are we supposed to be passive and let the county's unsafe, noisy, polluting, expensive monument to special interests move forward based on the fact that planners are going to argue to the FAA? I think not.

It is far too much of a gamble with the health and safety of Orange County residents. We, the voters, must take control of the reuse of the former Marine base at El Toro. It is easy to do; vote 'yes' on Measure F on March 7.

Then we all will have a say after all the impacts are disclosed."


Aliso Viejo

"El Toro airport is never going to get off the ground. Newport Beach is just like the rest of Orange County. We are all subject to the stupidity of greedy politicians.

Measure F is a good start to giving any community the ability to protect itself."


Foothill Ranch

"Shortsighted individuals who oppose it should not be allowed to detrimentally affect so many people and businesses. John Wayne Airport realistically cannot be expanded; converting El Toro is the optimal solution.

El Toro has a surrounding no-home buffer zone, which contains 18,450 acres. John Wayne Airport has no buffer zone.

El Toro has 4,700 acres, two 10,000-foot runways and two 8,000-foot runways. John Wayne has a 5,700-foot runway.

There are no schools, homes or day-care centers within three miles of El Toro runways. There are 254 schools and day-care centers within five miles of John Wayne and thousands of homes.

The county has voted twice in support of El Toro being used as a commercial airport.

There is a growing demand for passenger and cargo flights which John Wayne simply cannot handle. South County has experienced tremendous growth. They should handle some of the air traffic that goes along with it and not expect it all to fall on John Wayne or somewhere else."



Newport Beach

"At the same time, the county is alarming Newport Beach and Costa Mesa residents by saying that if El Toro does not become an airport, John Wayne will expand dramatically to four times its current size.

The intention, of course, is to frighten John Wayne's neighbors into supporting an airport at El Toro at all costs, regardless of its impact on other areas in the county.

The reality is that demand at John Wayne has been stagnant and that county projections for future demand are grossly overestimated.

With each passing episode of lies and misrepresentation by the county, the chasm that has developed between North and South County continues to grow, along with the mistrust of our elected officials.

Measure F is the public's only hope of reining in an out-of-control and irresponsible Board of Supervisors."


Laguna Beach

"After all, the flight tests proved the vast majority of their citizens are not going to be excessively impacted by noise. Certainly, the military flights they experienced were far noisier, and they bought their homes and lived with those jets for years.

They are just greedy. Think of how much revenue their city cold squeeze out of annexing all that property. They have filed papers for that very purpose.

Proof of the real motives can be seen in their rush to change Irvine zoning laws so that homes can now be built extremely close to the El Toro property.

That has been a "no home" buffer zone for decades in order to protect people from the military air base. It is highly irresponsible for Irvine to allow homes to be built in that area now, knowing the county is planning a commercial airport at El Toro.

How many more questionable decisions will be made with the excuse it is 'to stop the airport'?"


Costa Mesa

"Too many blindly accept the word of politicians and others who have an economic interest in developing a large commercial airfield.

They think it's a great idea. They are told that it's a turnkey operation and that it's safe ('It must be safe, the Marines used it as an airfield!').

They hear rumors that it may close down or significantly reduce those noisy jets at John Wayne Airport.

The facts are that El Toro airport would be one of the most unsafe airports in the United States. The flight paths, as decided by the majority of the Board of Supervisors, were not acceptable to the Marines, who stopped northern takeoffs by large aircraft after the Loma Ridge crash.

The organization that most airline pilots belong to has stated that the proposed flight paths are unsafe and not acceptable. But Supervisors Charles Smith, Jim Silva and Cynthia Coad and their supporters know better, or so they say.

As a pilot of more than 30 years and an aircraft owner, I will add my small, but educated, voice. El Toro airport would be unsafe for pilots, airline passengers and anyone in the wrong place and at the wrong time on the ground.

Don't be misled by those who do not have safety for the public as their primary goal."


Lake Forest

"And even more tiresome is the endless mantra that South County must provide for its own airport needs.

By their logic the residents of Corona should be required to have their own ocean and sand if they decide to visit Huntington Beach.

What these writers continually fail to realize is we will all share the burden if El Toro airport ever becomes reality.

We will all share the increased pollution in our air. We will all share the increased traffic congestion on our freeways. We will all share the jet noise, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, from the increased air traffic flying over all parts of the county.

And we will all eternally suffer the pain and embarrassment of allowing three incompetent politicians to ruin forever what is arguably one of the most beautiful and desirable places to live in the United States.

Do not try to paint the residents of South County as villains for trying to protect and preserve what is valuable to all of us."


Lake Forest

"El Toro airport supporters keep threatening Newport Beach residents and other people living around John Wayne that unless El Toro is built, John Wayne will have to triple in size and schools and homes be demolished.

Yet this kind of event is exactly what Measure F was designed to prevent. The measure would require a full environmental impact study to be performed before any jail larger than 1,000 beds within a mile of 100 or more homes, landfill or airport could be built or expanded. Then a two-thirds majority vote would be required to proceed with such a project.

We all know that if El Toro is ever built, at the very least it will be held up in court for years. Measure F is the only guaranteed protection against John Wayne expansion once restrictions expire in 2005.

The alternative to Measure F is the word of the pro-airport supervisors. Enough said. Vote 'yes' on Measure F on March 7."


Laguna Niguel

NPC Noise News
NPC Home

Illinois Residents Stall Plans For Road Course

PUBLICATION: Chicago Tribune
DATE: February 6, 2000
SECTION: Real Estate; Pg. 9B; Zone: C
BYLINE: Hal Dardick
DATELINE: Sugar Grove, Illinois

The Chicago Tribune reported on Sugar Grove residents who attended a planning commission meeting to oppose plans for a country club with a road course. While they were unable to stop the plans, residents were successful in stalling them.

According to the article, the Plan Commission postponed a vote on the country club and asked for an independent study on the impact of the proposed Autobahn Motorsports Country on the Carriage Hill subdivision, about 1,200 feet from the proposed site for the course.

The article said that developers want to build a road course for country club members to operate their high-performance, "street legal" vehicles. The article went on to say that no spectator stands or race cars are allowed.

The article said plans include a road course, clubhouse with swimming pool and a go-cart track for kids--all on a 120-acre site near Aurora Municipal Airport. Plans to expand the project to 310 acres include tennis courts, a dining facility and banquet hall.

Residents are not pleased. According to Carriage Hill resident Janet Bergman, the country club is more of a playground than a community project. Bergman presented the commission with a set of petitions opposing the club signed by 550 of Sugar Grove, which has an estimated population of 3,800.

Local officials are aware of tension around the proposed project.

The article said Commissioner Karen Baumgartner asked for developers to give residents demonstrations on nearby roadways using the type of vehicles that would use the road. "The people need to actually hear it," she said.

The article said that developers showed a videotape of such a test at the meeting but residents weren't satisfied. According to the article, the test found trucks passing by a distance similar to the proposed site were louder than foreign sports cars racing their engines or speeding. The test concluded that at 1,200 feet, noise from the speeding cars reached a decibel level in the mid-60s, slightly louder than a normal conversation.

Commissioner Grace McKnight reminded the audience that 66 decibels (dB) might be acceptable for normal conversation, but a sustained 66 dB would be intolerable.

The article said that the Village Board would probably call for an independent noise study.

The article said that developers planned to build a berm and landscaping to buffer the noise, and agreed to: allow only vehicles with mufflers, test all vehicles for noise levels over 103 decibels and establish a noise-monitoring committee that would include a resident.

The article said that the developers claim the project will have a significant and positive economic impact locally. "You are going to have thousands of celebrities, athletes and wealthy people from the Chicago area look at this site, and it's going to generate commercial development," said developer Mark Basso.

However, one commissioner was quick to point out that Basso's premise was faulty. "The arguments of bringing a certain caliber of person here to Sugar Grove are unrealistic," said commissioner Charles Atwell. "They will come here for the racetrack, but they aren't going to settle here in Sugar Grove."

NPC Noise News
NPC Home

Previous week: January 30, 2000
Next week: February 13, 2000



Aircraft Noise
Amplified Noise
Effects on Wildlife/Animals
Construction Noise
Firing Ranges
Health Effects
Home Equipment and Appliances
International News
Environmental Justice
Land Use and Noise
Civil Liberty Issues
Miscellaneous Noise Stories
Noise Ordinances
Noise Organizations Mentioned
Outdoor Events
Noise in Our National Parks/Natural Areas
Residential and Community Noise
Snowmobile and ATV Noise
Research and Studies
Technological Solutions to Noise
Transportation Related Noise
Violence and Noise
Watercraft Noise
Workplace Noise

Chronological Index
Geographical Index

NPC Menu Bar NPC Home Page Ask NPC Support NPC Search the NPC Home Page NPC QuietNet NPC Resources NPC Hearing Loss and Occupational Noise Library NPC Noise News NPC Law Library NPC Library