Maryland Lawmakers Join Residents In Wanting To Sue FAA Over Flight Patterns

BALTIMORE (WJZ)– The FAA faces even more high power opposition over it’s aviation changes around Baltimore and D.C. area airports.

Since the FAA switched to a new system that sends air traffic over the same area, instead of spreading planes out, complaints about noise have been flying.

Gov. Larry Hogan wants to sue the FAA on behalf of fed-up residents and Maryland lawmakers on Capitol Hill are throwing their support behind that plan.

First it was just the residents complaining about too many planes flying over their neighborhoods, but now they’ve gathered steam because almost every Maryland lawmaker on Capitol Hill is supporting a plan to sue the FAA.

“The FAA has not been as responsive as we want. They met with people in the neighborhood which we asked them to do, then they took the recommendation from folks in the neighborhood and collected them, but they have not followed through on them,” said Senator Chris Van Hollen of Maryland (D).

The FAA changed to the NextGen program about two years ago, and one of the stated reasons was for fuel efficiency.

The FAA also says NextGen uses satellite based navigation to save time, but as people deal with airplane traffic at odd hours, others hope the pressure of a lawsuit will force the FAA to reconsider.

“But we still hear the roar. Mostly at night you can really hear it,” said Moses Lattimore of Anne Arundel County.

“We have to start somewhere. If that wakes every body up, so be it,” said Mickey Coleman of Anne Arundel County.

The FAA says it’s committed to hearing the community’s concerns. Some residents in the area say having an international airport in their back yard isn’t that bad and it’s a plus for the region.

Other cities have also sued the FAA over the NextGen program.

Most recently, an appeals court sided with the city of Phoenix, stating that the agency did not do it’s due diligence before switching over to the new plan.

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