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Request for Extension for Comment Period and Comments on the US Air Force Reserve Command F-35A Oper

Re:Request for Extension for Comment Period and Comments on the US Air Force Reserve Command F-35A Operational Beddown Environmental Impact Statement 


Not good news. DM One of Four bases considered for F35.

Ear-Splitting, Fuel and Fume Dumping, Crash Risk Migration is On this Winter: See details

The Ear-Splitting Migration is on


An ear-splitting and alarming migration takes place every winter over the skies of Tucson as squadrons of aircraft temporarily relocate here from other states and countries for training.  This winter migration brings in scores of military aircraft that add to the noise, health concerns, and air pollution already generated by routine military flights from Davis Monthan Air Force Base and Tucson International Airport, (Air National Guard). These added flights also up the ante on the possibility of a disaster over the already crowded skies of Tucson.  See details and complaint information here.


Updates on Operation Snowbird 2015

Here's the rundown on DMAFB's Total Force Training (fka Operation Snowbird) visiting aircraft.

The DMAFB noise complaints line is 520-228-5091 to call in especially egregious offenders. Callers will be asked for the time, location, and aircraft type. The folks on the phone are pretty nice. More information about making comments to DMAFB is at --

There is a "planespotting" page on the DMAFB website that can help folks identify what is going overhead -- -- (~168KB, 915x1067PX, JPEG format).


From: 355 FW/PA 355th FW Public Affairs <>
Date: Tue, Oct 6, 2015 at 4:08 PM
Subject: D-M Hosts Units for Training in October

United States Air Force
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
3405 S Fifth Street, Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Ariz., 85707
(520) 228-3406; FAX (520) 228-0916

Press Release
Release No. 10-02-15
October 6, 2015

D-M Hosts Units for Training in October

DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. – Multiple units from across the country will be visiting Davis-Monthan throughout the month of October for training.

A KC-130J Harvest Hawk will train at D-M from October 16-23. The KC-130J is from the 4-160th Special Operations Aviation Regiment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, WA.

A KC-135 from the 22nd Air Refueling Wing at McConnell AFB, KS, will train here October 5-9 alongside D-M A-10s.

A C-130J from the 302nd Airlift Wing at Peterson AFB, CO, will train with the 68th Rescue Flight October 17-18.

A U-28 from the 14th Weapons Squadron at Hurlburt Field, FL will train here October 5-10.

During these visits, the aircrews will follow all D-M arrival and departure processes and adhere to noise abatement procedures. The KC-130J will be flying at night however, they will limit their night missions as much as possible. This training has been fully coordinated with local government and law enforcement officials. Extensive safety precautions are in place to protect the service members and local citizens and to limit inconvenience to the communities.



Operation Snowbird update for 2015 and how to lodge complaints

AZ Daily Star hides fact of TF Survey showing opposition to expanded flight programs

The Arizona Daily Star is well aware of the Tucson Forward survey of 4000 randomly selected households which are directly impacted in Central Tucson by military flights, with questions and procedure guided by an objective professor at University of Arizona and with over a 15% return rate.  The survey proves that the support for the base is approximately around 50-50 and that opposition to increased flights, noise, and hours of flying is high.  The Daily Star interestingly failed to note that in its myriad articles about the future of DM AFB.  Furthermore, they repeatedly paint Tucson Forward as merely noise complainers.  The degree to which military flight noise negatively effects our environment has high health hazards in itself; however, we are even more concerned with 1. how much groundwater is DM sucking out of our precious and diminishing ground water, 2) how much of the water is it polluting  (DM has caused toxic groundwater plumes and TIA is a superfund site -- DM has had its cancer zone lawsuits around the base in years gone by due to groundwater pollution), 3, how much of the circling military jets from DM and TIA contribute to our increasing ozone and air pollution problems (we know that each jet is burning tens of thousands of dollars of fuel per hour)?  Next time you hear the radio announcer telling you to carpool to keep summer ozone levels low, think of the F16s circling overhead and what they are contributing to health problems in this valley.   DM provided the sources for a lot of economic propaganda to the Star (look at their sources) but nowhere does the Star do an objective analysis of the costs to this area.  Furthermore, look at the DM sourced economic illustration of the area's three largest income industries and note that DM conveniently left out tourism (which is probably larger an income producer than any of the three named and will be increasingly negatively impacted by DM-TIA/ANG military flights).  Also, housing is negatively impacted wherever the jets fly.  The Star only focuses on some homes and apartments near the base that temporarily house soldiers (who shop mostly at the commissary and don't contribute to local sales tax) and military retirees (who also live here to shop at the base and thereby don't contribute to the local sales tax).   There fails to be an analysis of how Tucson could thrive and develop a healthier more prosperous peacetime economy or support for a base that could be a better neighbor.  The base is currently surrounded by urban density.  Its activities with single engine jets are unsafe, unhealthy, and diminish the beauty and enjoyment of this city.  The Star is not really providing an objective analysis but upon close inspection is spoon feeding the public an infomercial created by the DM AFB and local large businesses that benefit.  Nissan's benefit does not spell a large enough benefit to the rest of this community to offset the harms experienced in Tucson by any expansion of base activities. 

Got Ospreys?

Got Ospreys flying over your house?  check out these links to see accidents, including when 11 Marines died near Tucson/Marana.;_ylt=AwrTcdeDVFpVxhIAJlgnnIlQ;_ylu=X3oDMTByNWU4cGh1BGNvbG8DZ3ExBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzYw--  April 2000: Plans to deploy a controversial military aircraft now in the final stages of testing may be cast into doubt after 19 Marines were killed in a weekend crash that ranks among the most deadly peacetime accidents in years.  A tilt-rotor V-22 Osprey, built to take off like a helicopter and then tilt its propellers 90 degrees forward to fly like a fixed-wing aircraft, crashed nose first Saturday night near a municipal airport at Marana, Ariz., about 15 miles northwest of Tucson.

UA Wildcat Addresses the possible loss of A10 Warthog and Noise Ghettos

how the AF helicopter "rescue" and military exercise pads impact an area

Military Jet Noise Health Impacts Study / Whibdey Island Lawsuit Exhibit

A must read document.  Attach this document to all your emails to all officials when you complain about health, cite to it in your public hearings.  Inform you public and policy makers.  No surprise but science tells us how bad the military jet noise is for our health.  Now let's ask the same questions about the fuel and exhaust its dumping on us, the ground water it's sucking and polluting, and not to mention the possibility of a jet dropping on our downtown. 

DM Environmental Assessment adds more Helicopter training sites to area

Draft Supplemental EA Evaluates Proposed New Landing and Drop Zones for Personnel Recovery Training in Central and Southern Arizona - comments due by May 4

Posted 4/2/2015   Updated 4/8/2015 Email story   Print story


Release Number: 010415

4/2/2015 - DAVIS-MONTHAN AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. -- The 355th Fighter Wing released the 563rd Rescue Group Personnel Recovery Supplemental Environmental Assessment today for public review and comment. A 30-day comment period follows the release of the document. The comment period will end Monday, May 4, 2015.

The draft Supplemental Environmental Assessment (SEA) and draft Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) evaluates the potential environmental impacts associated with the proposed increase in the number of helicopter landing zone (HLZ) and drop zone (DZ) sites available for personnel recovery training use by the U.S. Air Force.  There would be no increase in flights departing from or returning to D-M as part of this action.    

Of the 20 identified and evaluated sites, the Air Force proposes using 16 for routine personnel recovery training events and exercises.  The HLZ/DZs are located in a variety of settings on state and Federal lands throughout southern and central Arizona.  Sites are located in six counties: Cochise, Gila, Graham, Pima, Pinal and Santa Cruz. 

The Draft Rescue Group SEA can be viewed by the end of April 2nd at, and will be available at the following regional libraries:
Cochise County: Elsie S. Hogan Community Library, 100 North Curtis Avenue, Willcox, AZ 85643
Gila County: Globe Public Library, 339 South Broad Street, Globe, AZ 85501
Graham County:  Safford City Graham Library, 808 South Seventh Avenue, Safford, AZ 85546
Pima County: Joel D. Valdez Main Library, 101 North Stone Avenue, Tucson, AZ 85701
Pinal County: Oracle Public Library, 565 American Avenue, Oracle, AZ 85623
Santa Cruz County: Nogales-Rochlin Library, 518 North Grand Avenue, Nogales, AZ 85621

Public comments must be submitted in writing by Monday, May 4, 2015, either via e-mail to, or by mail to: ATTN: RESCUE SEA COMMENT, 355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs, 3405 S Fifth Street, Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona 85707.

All comments will be considered before the SEA is finalized.

Contact the 355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs office with any questions at 520-228-3378.

Whibdey Island citizens file for injunction against Naval Air

Read the article posted today about the filing of an injunction against Naval Air Force's assault on citizens of Whibdey Island, WA. 

WT* These people have nothing to do but waste our taxes and the environment. training in Transyl

military backs down after wrongfully sending low level flights over residences in Tacoma

Two F35s flew over Tucson involved with DM 2/25/15

-----Original Message-----
Sent: Thursday, February 26, 2015 1:09 PM
To: Susan Banner
Subject: RE: Jets

Good afternoon.  We spoke to our Operations folks this morning and we were able to find out that two F-35s did practice approaches at DM yesterday morning around 1030.  Transient military aircraft are permitted to accomplish practice approaches at DM for proficiency training but if they are not landing at DM, they have to leave DM airspace immediately afterwards.  These F-35s did not land at DM so they departed immediately afterwards.  We do not track home base locations of these types of transients so I don't have any additional information on the aircraft.   The F-22s and F-16s for Heritage Flight did arrive yesterday but they arrived in the afternoon.  

 Hope this helps,


 -----Original Message-----

From: [ a local hotelier]

Sent: Wednesday, February 25, 2015 3:56 PM


Subject: RE: Jets

 Thank you, Nicole. Appreciate the effort.


Sent: Wednesday, February 25, 2015 3:10 PM

To: [ local hotelier]

Subject: RE: Jets

Good afternoon.  I wanted to let you know that I received your e-mail and I've passed it along to Staff Sgt Brad Sisson who is helping me with the noise complaint program.  We'll let you know if it turns out to be something else but I think the aircraft your neighbor heard were arriving at DM for the annual Heritage Flight Training and Certification Course.  This year F-22s and F-16s are participating and have been arriving at the base today.  There are no F-35s involved in Heritage Flight. 

 Here is a link to one of our earlier press releases about Heritage Flight that gives some details on all the participating aircraft:  

 The aircraft will be flying Friday, Saturday and Sunday. 

 All the best,

 Nicole Dalrymple

 Chief, Community Relations

 355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs Office

 Davis-Monthan AFB, Arizona

 (520) 228-3378 - DSN: 228-3378


 From: local hotelier

Sent: Wednesday, February 25, 2015 12:11 PM


Subject: Jets

 Dear Nicole:

 Today someone reported seeing/hearing two ghastly noises overhead, much louder than F16's. I heard the second one which sounded for just a few seconds but louder than any noise I've ever heard including the F22 that "accidently" broke the sound barrier and a lot of windows several years ago, (I am directly in the flight path) at approximately 10:30 this morning. The person who heard the noise said they were F35's. Can you confirm this or similar noisy aircraft that might be responsible? If there is an F35 here I know several hundred people who would like to know this.

 Thank you.

Sam Hughes Neighborhood   

Tucson, AZ 85719


Senator McCain on the Military Industrial Complex Follies

We are not alone with these problems


December 7, 2014  Anonymous donor in Tucson

 Dear [donator],

 On behalf of the Stop the F35 Coalition, I would like to thank you for your generous donation

of  $100. Your contribution makes it possible for us to continue our legal fight against the inappropriate F35 basing decision in Burlington, VT.   Through our public struggle to prevent the loss of health, safety and property values and protect citizens in our Chittenden County communities, we will also be fighting against and calling attention to the national F35 scandal.

 Over the past three years, the STF35 Coalition has brought world-renowned experts to testify in public forums about the dangers of the F-35 basing.  We have held rallies, leafleted neighborhoods, published dozens of articles in local media, and testified at City Council meetings.  Our opposition to the F35s caused a year-long delay of the basing decision, and our in-depth research and analysis forced the USAF to issue a revised Environmental Impact Statement.  

 Your support will allow us to continue the political work, reach out to more of our neighbors, and carry on the fight in the courts.   In addition to our Act 250 violations appeal case at the Supreme Court, we have filed a second suit, this one in Federal Court against the US Air Force, alleging eight counts of flagrant violations of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) by the Air Force.  As the STF35 Coalition attorney Jim Dumont said, the basing decision process was a “sham,” because the Air Force hid the most important facts from the public.  

 As you know, the cost of our campaign does not go away as our battle continues but with your help, we will not give up.   Thank you again for your donation and your part in this fight to save our communities from the F35s, and we hope we can count on your support in the future.

 Once again, thank you for your generous donation.

 Sincerely,                                             Note: Your support is greatly appreciated. The fight continues!!!

Roger Bourassa



 Donations are tax deductible. Federal ID# 0281472

the F35 primadona problems (more)

Isn't it clever? It can actually take off when there are puddles on the runway! 

F16 dangers

more info about the TF Survey results/ zip codes and result charts

November 24, 2014- Arizona Center for Law in the Public Interest Letter re: AF EA FONSI

AZ Daily Star article about TF Survey Nov 22, 2014

Tod bad the Star didn't really clarify that the SADA survey covered southern Arizona and many places where people are not exposed to the flight paths while, in contrast, the TF Survey was a randomly selected group within the flight path activity; 17 or Tucson's 21 zip codes.  Considering that the Star gets a lot of advertising support from the businesses that service the local military, they did try to be objective in this reporting.   The TF survey is the much more objective survey and expresses the views of Central Tucson, where the base and its impacts are located.  That is what is important.  It clearly shows that there is little support for increasing the flights, despite the AF FONSI to double the current level of flights.  November 24th is the deadline for your comments (Monday!).  Please send something to the email address provided in the article and elsewhere on this website.

KUAZ story on DEA deadline Nov 24

COER Health Studies

Tucson Weekly Cover Story on TF Survey- by Mari Herrera


The TF survey was necessary as a response to the bogus survey promoted by SADA.  The SADA survey is invalid by any standard on its face and should not be relied upon my military or political decision makers.  It is a self-serving device designed and executed by military catering business interests (who created and manage/compose SADA and DM-50) and which are not concerned with the health, welfare, and safety of central Tucson citizens.  We provide a comparison here between the TF sponsored survey, which over cautious in its attempts to present an objective survey, random selection of impacted residents and employed recognized learned expert advice for design and analysis.

Survey Results and Analysis - Published November 10, 2014

The Tucson Forward survey was designed to provide residents of the Tucson neighborhoods most affected by military overflights, an opportunity to anonymously state their opinions about Air Force (AF) plans to increase the frequency of overflights as compared to the current level of Operation Snowbird, and to bring in noisier, riskier aircraft. 

 * Fifty-three to 57% of all responses were opposed to replacing the fighters that regularly fly over Tucson, with F-18, F-22 and F-35 jet aircraft.

 * There was slightly more opposition to increased noise (57% re Davis-Monthan, 56% re Air National Guard) than to the increased safety risk (54% re D-M, 53% ANG) from the Air Force’s plans to expand the number of overflights and bring in the newer jets. 

 * Very strong support exists (83%) to keep Davis-Monthan Air Force Base open with the current fighters and current overflight operation levels.

 * However, this support drops to 59%, (a drop of 24 percentage points) if the noisier, riskier fighter airplanes are brought in.

 * Strong support (63%) is expressed for limiting operations at D-M and ANG to those operations currently in place.

 * A clear majority of respondents (66%) were previously unaware of the much larger direct economic contribution of the tourism industry to Tucson (4.6% of GDP) as compared to that of Davis-Monthan (2.6% of GDP).

 * There is wide variation in the responses from different parts of the city (see section on analysis by zip code) that can be correlated with their proximity to the D-M and ANG runways.


Press Release November 10, 2014: Survey of Tucson Residents and opposition to expansion of military

Press Release November 10, 2014: Survey of Tucson Residents and opposition to expansion of military flights
A TUCSON FORWARD SURVEY OF 17 TUCSON ZIP CODES SHOWS STRONG SUPPORT (63%) FOR LIMITING MILITARY FLIGHTS OVER THE CITY, revealing lack of public confidence in the Air Force Draft Environmental Assessment (DEA) with its highly controversial "Finding of No Significant Impact". The DEA claims that there will be no significant impact on Tucson from the increased overflights and much louder, riskier jets the Air Force (AF) plans to fly over Tucson.

Local Jurisdictions and Federal Government control of Airports and Noise

Urgent message to our supporters, community, organizations

Hi everyone,

The main purpose of this email is to notify you of just how important it is for every individual and every Neighborhood Association or other pertinent organization, to send the Air Force separate letters requesting public hearings and at least a 60 day extension for the public comment period on the recently released Environmental Assessment regarding increasing military over flights in Tucson's urban area.  Attached is a sample letter. 


Your city council and board of supervisors are not informing you about one of the most important issues concerning the current Air Force-sponsored environmental assessment to radically increase military flights in Tucson and a crucial period for public comment which expires in a few days.  The Arizona Daily Star under reports this side of the local air force issues while featuring DM authored propaganda because their major advertisers benefit financially from DM.  The citizens, however, are paying the price through decreased well being, safety, water and air quality, and property values. 

Tucson Forward, Inc., a local non-profit organization, recently conducted a survey of randomly selected 4000 households in areas affected by military training flights in Tucson.   Preliminary results show that the people directly impacted by the Air Force decisions are nearly 80% opposed to any increases in frequency, hours, or noise levels of military flight training.  Tucson Forward is still working on the analysis of this recently completed survey and will have the results out soon.

But for now, the top priority is that public hearings be held concerning this recent Environmental Assessment which has a FONSI (finding of no significant impact) if flights and noise levels are increased in Tucson as proposed.   We also request at least a 60 day extension of the current 30 day comments period which is set to expire.   


Due to selection of still a different baseline, a different scope, not to mention consistent violations of NEPA in the past, the current DEA raises additional serious concerns. Air Force/Community Liaison Scott Hines keeps pointing out that it is entirely different from the most recent DEA, and urging us not to compare them side by side. At the MCRC Operations Subcommittee, Tucson Forward Chairperson Mary Schlitz  questioned whether, under the circumstances, there shouldn’t have been a whole new scoping process, with community input.

Here are some of the reasons for needing an extension, which you can cite in your letters (but be sure to use your own words if you have time, please).

* The EA is very long and complex.

* It is highly technical.

* it requires large amounts of time to read and understand its procedures and conclusions.

* Most people work, and have family obligations, leaving them limited time per day to devote to studying the EA and its appendices. After all, the EA took teams of experts over two years to create.

* Most people are not experts in assessment of risk, noise, air quality, economics, and legalities.

The Air Force must receive the requests as soon as possible, so it's a good idea to email the requests.  Here's the email address:

Below is the USPS paper mail address. However, if you choose this way, you need to send it immediately so it will have time to get there and be processed:


355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs

3405 S. Fifth Street

Davis Monthan AFB AZ 85707

Thanks again everyone!

Kathleen Williamson and

- Tucson Forward, Inc. Board of Directors


EIS FONSI released by Air Force / Important for Community to Respond w/in 30 days

Those of you who have been following the Davis-Monthan AFB (DMAFB) Operation Snowbird Environmental Assessment (OSB EA) process can now see the final result, released today (spoiler alert, it came up FONSI). This means the 30-day clock for public comment has started ticking -- comments /MUST/ be emailed (or postmarked if sending hardcopy) by close of business Thu 23-OCT-2014.

Note that OSB is now called Total Force Training -- new name, same great taste! -- and, predictably, the EA is a beefy tome, available from DMAFB's website -- -- in segments to keep bandwidth- choke to a dull roar:

* Draft: EA and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) -- -- [~5.5MB, 142 pages, PDF format], searchable plus maps and other graphics.

* Appendix A: Public Notice and Scoping Material -- -- [~17MB, 416 pages, PDF format], includes some scans (mailed comment letters, newspaper clippings) so is mostly but not entirely searchable.

* Appendix B: Air Quality Calculations -- -- [~147KB, 32 pages, PDF format], last three pages (emissions inventories for baseline plus two alternatives) are scans of docs, rest is searchable.

* Appendix C: Noise Analysis -- -- [~12.5MB, 128 pages, PDF format], almost all searchable and worth a look.

* Appendix D: Interagency/ Intergovernemental Coordination and Consultations -- -- [~534KB, four pages, PDF format], scans of correspondence between DMAFB and the State Historic Preservation Office regarding possible impacts to historic properties.

As DMAFB's press release (below) states, hard copy is also available for review (not for check-out) at some local libraries.

Military news about Tucson draft Environmental Assessment

F15 crash in W Virginia

more articles/ communities across America protest military overflights

Senate Appropriations Committee/ Defense - and form to provide testimony

The Sept 2013 Vanity Fair Article on the F35

NY Times reassessment of F35 program

Dangers of F-22 and Air Force recklessness

Vermont's Plight- local and national Efforts to stop F-35

Facts on loudness of F35

Attached is a summary of Air Force data on the relative loudness of the F35

across various tests and reports.  The 121 db data actually is rare in that it

comes from an actual test by Lockheed of actual planes actually flying. This addresses public discussion during June, July 2014 and Arizona Daily Star reports. 


Davis Monthan did not predate Tucson

When Charles Lindbergh flew here in 1927, to dedicate Davis-Monthan field, it was a municipal airport. Originally the municipal airfield was located at the site of the current Tucson Rodeo Grounds. Davis-Monthan Airport became the Tucson Army Air Field in 1940, with assignments of Army Air Corps units, then in December of 1941, was Davis-Monthan Army Air Field. After the end of World War II, training was stopped. It wasn’t until January of 1948 that it was renamed Davis-Monthan Air Force Base. I have noticed that many people in DM 50, and other affiliated organizations are stressing the 1927 date, and letting us assume that the USAF air base preceded many more homes than it actually did. There was no USAF until 1947.

Effects of Aircraft Noise Study

Information about Decibel Levels

Toll Free800-954-1998

Comparative Examples of Noise Levels

Comparative Examples of Noise Sources, Decibels
& Their Effects

Noise Source

Decibel Level

Decibel Effect

Jet take-off (at 25 meters)


Eardrum rupture

Aircraft carrier deck



Military jet aircraft take-off from aircraft carrier with afterburner at 50 ft (130 dB).



Thunderclap, chain saw. Oxygen torch (121 dB).


Painful. 32 times as loud as 70 dB.

Steel mill, auto horn at 1 meter. Turbo-fan aircraft at takeoff power at 200 ft (118 dB). Riveting machine (110 dB); live rock music (108 - 114 dB).


Average human pain threshold. 16 times as loud as 70 dB.

Jet take-off (at 305 meters), use of outboard motor, power lawn mower, motorcycle, farm tractor, jackhammer, garbage truck. Boeing 707 or DC-8 aircraft at one nautical mile (6080 ft) before landing (106 dB); jet flyover at 1000 feet (103 dB); Bell J-2A helicopter at 100 ft (100 dB).


8 times as loud as 70 dB. Serious damage possible in 8 hr exposure

Boeing 737 or DC-9 aircraft at one nautical mile (6080 ft) before landing (97 dB); power mower (96 dB); motorcycle at 25 ft (90 dB). Newspaper press (97 dB).


4 times as loud as 70 dB. Likely damage 8 hr exp

Garbage disposal, dishwasher, average factory, freight train (at 15 meters). Car wash at 20 ft (89 dB); propeller plane flyover at 1000 ft (88 dB); diesel truck 40 mph at 50 ft (84 dB); diesel train at 45 mph at 100 ft (83 dB). Food blender (88 dB); milling machine (85 dB); garbage disposal (80 dB).


2 times as loud as 70 dB. Possible damage in 8 hr exposure.

Passenger car at 65 mph at 25 ft (77 dB); freeway at 50 ft from pavement edge 10 a.m. (76 dB). Living room music (76 dB); radio or TV-audio, vacuum cleaner (70 dB).


Arbitrary base of comparison. Upper 70s are annoyingly loud to some people.

Conversation in restaurant, office, background music, Air conditioning unit at 100 ft


Half as loud as 70 dB. Fairly quiet

Quiet suburb, conversation at home. Large electrical transformers at 100 ft


One-fourth as loud as 70 dB.

Library, bird calls (44 dB); lowest limit of urban ambient sound


One-eighth as loud as 70 dB.

Quiet rural area


One-sixteenth as loud as 70 dB. Very Quiet

Whisper, rustling leaves





Barely audible


[modified from] on 2/2000.
SOURCES: Temple University Department of Civil/Environmental Engineering (, and Federal Agency Review of Selected Airport Noise Analysis Issues, Federal Interagency Committee on Noise (August 1992). Source of the information is attributed to Outdoor Noise and the Metropolitan Environment, M.C. Branch et al., Department of City Planning, City of Los Angeles, 1970.






The Navy is rolling out more robust hearing protection for flight deck sailors. (MCSN Nicolas C. Lopez / Navy)

By Meghann Myers
Staff writer

  • Filed Under

The Navy is developing new hearing protection for flight deck crews to block out the roar of new and noisy jets.

The F-35 Lightning II, which clocks in at a thundering 152 decibels, is forcing the service to come up with better hearing protection for sailors.

Enter the new headset: they offer 14 decibels more protection and are worn over earplugs, like the legacy “Mickey Mouse” headphones that the fleet has used for six decades.

“The Navy flight deck is one of the noisiest places in the military,” said Dan Ratcliff, program manager of aircrew systems for Naval Air Systems Command, in an April 8 briefing at the Sea-Air-Space expo outside Washington, D.C.

The new headset, known as the DC2, is a 14-decibel upgrade already in use with the 1st, 2nd and 3rd Marine Aircraft Wings.

Some sailors may also get to wear new foam ear plugs that have an embedded speaker, allowing yellowshirts to listen to the plane and the ship while on deck.

Ratcliff said the ear plugs fit most sailors, but if they don’t, there’s an option to have the speakers embedded into custom-made ear plugs.

So far the aircraft carrier Nimitz and its air wing are using the Argonaut system, which got the go-ahead for full production last November.

NAVAIR isn’t done trying to protect sailors’ hearing. Officials are now in the early stages of a triple hearing protection system that works at up to 39 decibels, Ratcliff said.


Military Use of Tucson International Airport

Military use

Tucson International Airport hosts Tucson Air National Guard Base, a 92-acre (37 ha) complex on the northwest corner of the airport that is home to the 162d Fighter Wing (162 FW), an Air Education and Training Command (AETC)-gained unit of the Arizona Air National Guard. The largest Air National Guard fighter unit in the United States, the 162 FW operates over 70 F-16C/D/E/F aircraft in three operational fighter squadrons. The wing provides training on the F-16 Fighting Falcon, augmenting the active Air Force's 56th Fighter Wing (56 FW) at Luke AFB, Arizona as a Formal Training Unit (FTU) for training Regular Air Force, Air Force Reserve Command, Air National Guard and NATO/Allied/Coalition F-16 pilots.

The wing also hosts the Air National Guard / Air Force Reserve Command (ANG AFRC) Command Test Center (AATC) as a tenant unit, which conducts operational testing on behalf of the Air Reserve Component. The 162 FW also hosts "Snowbird" operations during the winter months for Air Force, Air Force Reserve Command, and Air National Guard F-16 and A-10 units from northern tier bases in the continental United States, as well as Canadian Forces and Royal Air Force flying units.[8][9]

During its history at TUS, the 162nd has operated the F-86 Sabre, F-100 Super Sabre, F-102 Delta Dagger, A-7 Corsair II and F-16 Fighting Falcon aircraft. Not counting students or transient flight crews, the installation employs over 1,700 personnel, over 1,100 of whom are full-time Active Guard and Reserve (AGR) and Air Reserve Technician (ART) personnel, and the remainder traditional part-time Air National Guardsmen. Although an AETC organization, the 162nd also maintains an F-16 Alert Detachment for USNORTHCOM / NORAD and AFNORTH at nearby Davis-Monthan AFB in support of Operation Noble Eagle.

Drone Articles of Interest posted 8/5/14

Prior EA Comments and Scoping materials

The majority of 2011 EA scoping comments by citizens, rather than big businesses, are critical of the over head military flights. The attached document is the public scoping comments as preserved by the Air Force officials. 

jet noise from TIA-ANG complaints

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Tucson Forward- Citizens address Military Flights

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