More noise for residents during Heathrow runway repairs

1.9.2010 (BBC)

Residents living under the Heathrow flight path have been warned by the BAA to
expect prolonged aircraft noise for six weeks due to “critical” repairs.

Most planes land from the east and take off facing west, but the arrival and
departure runways are swapped daily.

From 13 September only the northern runway will be used for departures.

Planes make more noise during take-off, and homes under the north runway’s flight
path will now lose their half-day respite.

Up to 60,000 homes have been sent leaflets warning them about the work.

Residents living under the approach path in Battersea, Wandsworth, Putney, Barnes,
Richmond, north Feltham, south Hounslow and Isleworth will have longer periods
of noise from planes landing.

Those on the take-off route in Colnbrook, south Slough, Windsor, Datchet, Staines
and Egham will get no break from the noise of aircraft taking off.

The BAA said it also reverses the take-off and landing patterns every week, with
aircraft landing over Windsor and taking off over London, but this will also be
suspended during the repairs.

Maintenance checks showed that concrete blocks which support some of the asphalt
taxiways next to the northern runway could become unstable, causing the surface
to break up, the BAA said.

The blocks will need to be replaced “to avoid debris getting into aircraft engines”. 

Alternation ‘priceless’

Colin Wood, Heathrow’s director of airside operations, said: “I know this news
will not be welcomed and we want to convey our apologies to all affected.

“We would not suspend alternation if there was any other alternative. This work
is critical to the future safe operation of Heathrow.”

The 2M Group, which campaigns for communities affected by Heathrow operations,
has asked BAA to finish the work on time.

Wandsworth Council leader Edward Lister, a spokesman for 2M Group, said: “We
will be watching BAA very closely as the relief offered by runway alternation
is priceless to local people.”


see also


Temporary changes to Heathrow runway alternation for 6 weeks starting 13th Sept

For 6 weeks essential maintenance work will be taking place on taxiways connecting
Heathrow’s northern runway with the rest of the airfield. This means that Heathrow
will not be able to alternate daytime use of the runways as published during this
period, although night time alternation will be unaffected. On westerly operations,
BAA will use the southern runway for the majority of arrivals and the northern
runway for departures.   12.8.2010   More …..        
but, Theresa Villiers, Minister for  Aviation, has confirmed that   Runway Alternation will continue at Heathrow.  17.6.2010    More …..