Navy planes would be detrimental to area

Published 9:09 am Friday, December 17, 2010

To the Editor:

Franklin finds itself at a juncture. Should the City Council vote yes to negotiate with the Navy for touch-and-go operations at the airfield?

The Navy plans to schedule up to two separate three-hour touch-and-go operation periods per day (Monday through Friday and weekends if needed) to be completed by 10 p.m., if possible.

Two to five planes will be sent per period to perform 24 to 32 touch-and-go maneuvers (approximately every two minutes) per plane.

This translates to a whopping 48 to160 maneuvers in a single period and a staggering 96 to 320 in both periods combined.

These operations are the first step in a series for these unseasoned pilots to meet their requirements. The Navy’s demonstrations only give noise assessments. They do not eliminate the colossal safety risk, the fuel dumping issue, or the loss of property value that will result.

The hospital, high school, YMCA, residential and businesses throughout Franklin and Isle of Wight are affected due to flight paths.

To be in opposition has nothing to do with patriotism, or a lack thereof. It does, however, have everything to do with common sense.

This area is too populated for such excessive use and inexperience. The Navy’s legal right doesn’t imply a right decision, especially where alternatives do exist.

Let our disapproval, with discretion, be made known, that the use of this airfield can only be by acquisition. These plans, as they are, propose a detriment, without providing significant benefits.

The time is now. Contact your elected councilman and advise them which way to vote. This is your decision.

Pete Twisdale

Isle of Wight