LEE COUNTY, Fla. - Southwest Floridians concerned about airplane noise have an outlet for their comments this week.
Southwest Florida International Airport is holding a series of public information meetings, and the first of four took place Monday night.
The workshops are part of RSW's noise study, which is conducted every 5 years.
The last study, done in 2006, found the airport didn't have a noise problem, but that was before flight patterns changed, and those who never heard air traffic over their homes were suddenly bombarded with airplane noise.
"The planes, especially in season, start coming in after 5 o'clock in the morning, and they come right over our house," says Anita Turner, a Fort Myers Beach resident.
Turner is one of dozens who showed up to the first workshop to learn more about airport activity and give input on what they're hearing overhead.
ESA Airports is the environmental firm conducting the study, and Vice President Michael Arnold says they plan to compile people's complaints and tackle the ones that can safely be addressed.
"We'll determine what the baseline noise condition is for the airport, what the condition is going to be in 5 years, and what the potential measures are to improve the noise situation around the airport," Arnold says, adding that those potential solutions still need approval from the FAA.
As the study progresses, Arnold says there will be more workshops in the Fall, and again in the Spring.
There are three more workshops scheduled this week around Lee County, and for those fed up with what's buzzing over their homes everyday, the opportunity to speak their minds is certainly welcome.
"I may not be happy with the situation, but at least I do understand it a little bit better now," Turner says.
The next three meetings will be held 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the following locations:
* Tuesday, August 16, 2011: Gateway Baptist Church, 13241 Griffin Drive, Fort Myers, FL
* Wednesday, August 17, 2011: Lee County Sports Complex/Hammond Stadium (meeting room is west of stadium), 14100 Ben C. Pratt/Six Mile Cypress Pkwy., Fort Myers, FL
* Thursday, August 18, 2011: Estero Community Park Recreation Center, 9200 Corkscrew Palms Blvd., Estero, FL
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