Track Planes, Noise Complaints

Plane over Potomac by DC Digital Photography

Ever had a fantasy of being an air traffic controller? Ever wanted to complain about a plane flying too loudly over your house? If you said yes to either of those questions, there’s a perfect website for you: Airscene.com.

Airscene is a system that tracks planes coming into and going out of airports. The link above is the one set up for Reagan National Airport. On top of merely tracking the progress of the planes, the system also uses about a dozen sound monitoring stations across the area to monitor how loud the planes are.

Here’s what it looks like:

This map indicates that at 1:19 pm on December 2nd, American flight 2033 from Boston (which is an A319 plane) was approaching for a landing at about 2300 feet above Georgetown.

While the Georgetown sound monitor is not working right now, we can see from the Rosslyn one across the river that the plane was putting out 58 decibels at ground level (that’s quieter than a normal conversation, by the way).

GM has noticed that some parts of Georgetown, particularly over by the University, suffer from a lot of aircraft noise. This site not only validates your grievance and tells you what airline to blame it even let’s you complain directly to the airport authority. You can then track your complaint as it flies its way through the FAA bureaucracy.

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