New landing procedure means less noise and pollution from planes approaching Southend
Southend Airport has been given permission for new aircraft approach procedures, which will reduce traffic in the skies, carbon emissions and noise.
The Directorate of Airspace Policy (DAP) has approved the ‘Direct Arrival’ instrument approach procedures, for introduction this week (17 December 2009).
Currently, aircraft coming into land at Southend Airport must position themselves directly overhead the airport at about 2500 feet in order to pinpoint their position, and then fly approximately eight miles away, before turning back towards the airport at 1500 feet, as the pilot makes the final approach to land on the runway.
However, the ‘Direct Arrival’ system means that pilots using their instruments (rather than by sight alone) can now land after positioning directly in line with the runway eight to nine miles out, without having to come to the airport overhead first.
Tom Clark, the airport’s Air Traffic Services Manager says "It is important that we strive to minimise the impact on the environment wherever possible. These procedures will offer more operational flexibility for pilots and controllers, as well as helping to reduce noise and carbon emissions per aircraft movement. There is a potential reduction of up to 33 miles flying distance on incoming flights from certain directions, less in others."
He adds "For people concerned about night flights, the new system will be of particular benefit in that it reduces the number of times an aircraft currently has to pass over the same area. It should be pointed out that there are not any changes to the flight paths that affect the Southend area, and the changes are actually reflecting the flight paths that pilots prefer to use as they result in less fuel being used."
Airport Managing Director Alastair Welch says "We know that noise and carbon emissions are two concerns that some people have about Southend Airport – particularly in regard to its proposed development. Today’s news further proves that we do listen and are constantly working to do all we can to address them."
Southend‐on‐Sea Borough Council Development Control Committee will review a planning application to turn Southend Airport into a fully functional regional airport by the 2012 Olympics, at its meeting in January 2010.
15 December 2009
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