Toxic Growler Jet Noise
- The intensity, frequency, duration, and altitude of the Growlers is a threat to public health, igniting a firestorm of protest in several counties because of the deafening and toxic noise.
- Aircraft noise levels included in the Navy’s DEIS are wrong. They are generated by a flawed and outdated computer model. In addition, they represent only an average of flying and non-flying times. They do not reflect actual noise measurements at Coupeville’s Outlying Field (OLF). The Navy’s noise assessment is inaccurate and misleading.
- Real-time measurements taken at Ebey’s Reserve near Coupeville show damaging levels of noise, up to 115 decibels— well past the 85-decibel level that begins to cause permanent hearing loss.
- Children exposed to loud noise show decreased reading comprehension, delayed development, impaired cognition, and memory loss. In 2013, the US Air Force disclosed that operations of the F-16 fighter aircraft in a Vermont neighborhood assaults children with noise sufficient to cause learning impairment and estimated that 45 percent more children will have their learning impaired if the F-35 jets are based in that neighborhood. The children of Central Whidbey are at risk.
- A moving aircraft causes compression and rarefaction, setting air molecules in motion and producing pressure waves. High-thrust engines, like those in the Growlers, emit low-frequency “windows rattling” pressure waves that penetrate into body organs and cause medical problems.
- The Navy recognizes the dangers of jet noise and protects its pilots and ground personnel. All personnel working in such areas receive hearing protection devices and are routinely monitored for health effects. Residential areas under the OLF flight path far exceed the Navy’s threshold of a hazardous noise zone, yet civilians are left to fend for themselves.