3/8/14 for immediate use
Third Runway would halve respite period for tens of thousands in West London
How the flight paths will work if a third runway is built:
- Planes will land on the new runway for 12-13 hours a day
- Planes will land on the current northern runway for 6-7 hours a day
- Planes will land on the current southern runway for 12-13 hours a day
Places like Kew or Hounslow West under the northern runway will continue to get around 8 hours of respite but this will be off-set for many because they will be able to hear aircraft from one of the two other runways. For places like Richmond under the southern flight path the respite period will be cut from 8 hours to just over 4.
A similar system of respite will apply when planes land from the west
The same system will also be introduced for take-offs to allow periods of respite for communities within a few miles of the airport
Tens of thousands of people who currently enjoy a half day’s break from the aircraft noise would see their respite period halved if a third runway went ahead at Heathrow. Campaign group HACAN, which opposes any new runway, has revealed that many areas of West London would have planes passing overhead at a rate of one every ninety seconds for almost 13 hours a day.
The information is buried in an appendix to a report HeathrowAirport slipped out before the summer holidays (1). It shows residents under the southern flight path, over places like Richmond, would only get just over 4 hours break from the noise each day. Currently they enjoy an 8 hour break when the planes switch runways at 3pm.
It would be all change if a third runway were to be built. People living under the current northern flight path would continue to get around 8 hours of respite but this would be off-set for many because they will be able to hear aircraft from one of the two other runways on either side of them.
HACAN Chair John Stewart said, “The prospect of 13 hour flying is nightmarish. Quite simply, many communities are going to be hammered if a third runway is built.”
Stewart added, “Heathrow Airport hasn’t hidden the information but the fact that it is buried in an appendix shows how reluctant they are to spell out the implications of a new runway.”
A decision on a third runway will not be taken for at least a year. The next Government will assess the findings of the Airports Commission, to be released in summer 2015, before deciding what to do.
Notes for editors:
(1). Air and Ground Noise Assessment – http://your.heathrow.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/01-Heathrow-3RNW-Air-and-Ground-Noise-Assessment.pdf or at 01: Air and ground noise assessment
For further information:
John Stewart on 0207 737 6641 or 07957385650