Pilots pushed to stick to flight paths amid airport anger

Daniela PizziraniNCA NewsWire
Not Supplied
Camera IconNot Supplied Credit: NCA NewsWire

Thousands of Brisbane residents will avoid noisy aircraft disturbances under a new trial to divert more planes over Moreton Bay.

Airservices Australia and the Brisbane Airport Corporation have agreed to three measures in response to community anger over flight paths.

During the 12-month trial, more flights will be directed over Moreton Bay during weekends and planes will fly at higher altitudes on departure.

A maximum of 45 planes an hour will be allowed to depart on weekends.

Pilots will also remain on an agreed flight path until they reach 10,000 to 12,000 feet to help ease residents’ noise complaints.

The trial is expected to start in the first half of this year and is designed to help people living in the suburbs of Bulimba, New Farm, Brookfield, Hamilton and the Samford Valley.

Following the opening of the airport’s new parallel runway in 2020, aircraft noise complaints skyrocketed.

That prompted action from the federal government.

Pilots “cutting corners” on flight paths due to lack of air traffic have been told to stay on track.

Brisbane residents from Hendra, Hamilton and New Farm protest against excessive airport aircraft noise. Image credit: The Courier Mail.
Camera IconBrisbane residents from Hendra, Hamilton and New Farm protest against excessive aircraft noise. Credit: NCA NewsWire

The Aircraft Noise Ombudsman found Airservices Australia had not told residents how Brisbane Airport’s flight trails would impact them.

It is one of Australia’s fastest growing airports.

Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce announced the trial on Wednesday following the release of the first quarterly report of a government-established independent community forum.

“The government acted decisively to ensure community concerns over aircraft noise issues since the new runway opened at Brisbane Airport are heard loud and clear” Mr Joyce said.

“The forum has undertaken extensive consultation with those impacted and we are very pleased with the progress made to date and the recommendations put forward”

Airservices Australia Brisbane Airport will submit a request to the Civil Aviation Safety Authority to increase the tailwind limit to seven knots, increasing the number of flights allowed over the bay.

As Brisbane reaches pre-COVID capacity, the City will see more than a doubling of the frequency of aircraft fly-overs as well as more severe noise pollution from larger international aircraft. Image credit: BFPCA
Camera IconAs Brisbane reaches pre-Covid capacity, the city will see more than a doubling of the frequency of aircraft flyovers as well as more severe noise pollution from larger international aircraft. Image: BFPCA Credit: NCA NewsWire

Greens candidate for the federal seat of Griffith Max Chandler-Mather said some residents had not received proper consultation from governments and were misled by airport management.

“Over the last 10 to 15 years, (residents) have been told repeatedly that the new parallel runway would lead to more flights taking off and arriving over the bay,” he told Nine News.

“But instead, what we‘ve seen is an unprecedented amount of flight traffic over some of the most densely populated areas of Brisbane.”

Brisbane Liberal MP Trevor Evans said the report identified many of the concerns raised by residents about aircraft noise.

“The forum has identified both immediate and long-term changes that will mitigate unnecessary and unreasonable aircraft noise, and I look forward to those measures being implemented as quickly as possible,” Mr Evans said.

“I am pleased that Brisbane residents voices in suburbs like Hendra, Hamilton and New Farm are being heard and have led to these strong recommendations”

The government has enlisted American company Tracks International to help find long-term solutions.

Originally published as Pilots pushed to stick to flight paths amid airport anger

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