Slight relief from aircraft noise

The University of WA medical doctor welcomed changes discussed at the Perth Airport Community Forum but said airport noise was still a nuisance.

Three changes will be trialled, two that affect SNAG suburbs and its 3000 members. The first, which will take effect in May, is for no preferred runways, except for the southern end of the cross runway.

The runway that takes flights over Queens Park will have six fewer flights on the weekend, with no changes at night.

Satellite-assisted navigation technology will also be trialled to reduce noise by replacing stepped descents with continual descents for jet aircraft.

The final change, which Airservices plans to trial for 12 months, is changing the flight path for planes departing to the south-west of Perth Airport to provide some respite between 10pm and 5am.

But Dr Rosman said local suburbs would still cop all the flights for fly-in, fly-out workers between 5am and 7am, and all other flights until 10pm.

‘Practically, it means that instead of 120 planes, we will have 113 planes overhead,’ he said.

‘The preferred runway change will probably make a minor improvement as the wind in Perth comes usually from the south-west and airplanes start against the wind. It is not enough but we will keep searching for further improvement.’

Tangney MP Dennis Jensen said as technology changed, aircraft noise improvements also needed reviewing.

‘To completely get rid of aircraft noise is to get rid of flying completely but you need to have a situation that is as well-balanced as you can make it,’ he said.

A Perth Airport spokeswoman said noise was unavoidable.

‘Airservices Australia, the government agency responsible for aircraft noise management and flight paths, has established a working group to investigate noise improvement options across the metropolitan area,’ the spokeswoman said.